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Writing about technology, social impact, and the future of finance. London School of Economics, Venmo/PayPal/Amazon Pay.

Why is fraud such a problem online? The answer goes pretty deep.

Classic hacker vibes. Photo by Jefferson Santos on Unsplash

We all know fraud is a problem online, but the scope is beyond what most of us realize. Globally, fraud cost over $5 trillion in 2019, a full 7.15% of expenditures, and it is on the rise. Identity fraud cost Americans $56 billion in 2020, and fraud is the biggest driver of consumer complaints in the U.S. Let’s not forget that a ransomware scheme recently brought much of the southeastern U.S. to the brink of a gas shortage. Fraud is a big business.

It’s easy to attribute the…

What comes next? Consumers deserve better.

Photo by Jp Valery on Unsplash

These may be strange times, but some things don’t change. Among these is the capacity of the credit industry to remain tone deaf in times of crisis, lobbying to maintain their position against even marginal limitations at the expense of the public good. We’ve seen this quietly unfold in the last few weeks, and it gestures toward a systemic reality that will allow the credit industry to profit for years from the cash-strapped decisions many Americans will need to make in the upcoming months.

The Death of an Act

In late March, the U.S. credit reporting industry successfully lobbied…

April Flora

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