Innovation Update

Future of fraud in a blockchain world

You can’t escape blockchain. The topic’s in the media daily. It’s at the forefront of digital disruption and innovation discussions among leading businesses. We’ve seen blockchain technology applications in banking, currencies, supply chain, contracts and dozens of other areas.

Maybe you totally comprehend blockchain. Or, possibly, you’re thoroughly confused.

Regardless, as anti-fraud, legal and compliance professionals, we must understand this technology and have a seat at the table when our organizations consider blockchain’s fraud risks. In fact, in EY’s recent Global Forensic Data Analytics Survey 2018, 32 percent of legal, compliance and anti-fraud professionals plan to adopt blockchain and distributed ledger technologies in 2018.

As this technology becomes more prevalent in business, anti-fraud professionals will need to ask: How can fraudsters exploit blockchain when we use it in business transactions, contracts, money exchanges or data interchanges?

In this column, I interview Paul Brody, a principal with EY and the global innovation leader of blockchain technology for the firm, to explore why and how this powerful encryption technology that brought us bitcoin and “smart contracts” could create new security risks and challenges, even as the technology closes off other avenues for theft and fraud.


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