Cambridge Company’s Adaptive Behavioural Analytics Making Fraud & Money Laundering A Thing of The Past

James Dargan

AI & Big Data Analytics To Eliminate Financial Crimes

A Global Market Insights report recently published on the anti-money laundering market stated that it anticipates its valuation to reach some $5 billion by 2027. Whether or not the figure is higher or lower than that, the number is an impressive one, all the same.

Here are the key takeaways from the report:

• The growing demand for advanced anti-money laundering solutions, such as transaction monitoring and compliance management, to counter fraudulent activities across the globe

• The growing technology investments and rising digitization across multiple business sectors are anticipated to support the market growth

• The APAC anti-money laundering market is propelled by the increasing frauds across the BFSI and insurance sectors

• Companies operating in the market are focusing on integrating emerging technologies, such as AI and big data analytics, to eliminate financial crimes

The last takeaway is an important one, as it highlights how important a role Deep Tech is to play as we move forward.

A company that realizes this is Featurespace, a global leader in enterprise financial crime prevention for fraud and anti-money laundering. The creator of what is called Adaptive Behavioral Analytics, Featurespace’s ARIC™ platform —  a real-time ML software that risk scores events in more than 180 countries to prevent fraud and financial crime — has a satisfied customer list that includes HSBC, TSYS, Worldpay, NatWest Group, Contis, Danske Bank, ClearBank, and Permanent TSB.

Featurespace

The Cambridge, UK-based company was created by a Cambridge University Professor, Bill Fitzgerald, and his Ph.D. student, Dave Excell, at the forefront of two academic fields: Data Science and Computer Science. Since then, Featurespace has built up its business and reputation through a combination of leveraging a collaborative approach while maintaining the ability to attract and retain the best customers, talent and investors.

All that has led to the company’s ARIC™ Risk Hub for enterprise fraud and financial crime, which can monitor real-time customer data, by using Adaptive Behavioral Analytics and Automated Deep Behavioral Networks, Featurespace’s proprietary ML inventions.

ARIC Risk Hub offers multiple solutions for fraud and Anti-Money Laundering analysts to spot suspicious activity and prioritize alerts with explainable anomaly detection. At the same time, ARIC Risk Hub recognizes genuine customers without blocking their activity, reducing friction

 — Featurespace

The ARIC Risk Hub can be applied to several niches, such as Card Fraud Prevention, Application Fraud Prevention, Payment Fraud Prevention, Merchant Acquiring Fraud Prevention, Anti-Money Laundering Solutions (AML), and Gaming Fraud Prevention, offering peace of mind that it can predict, prevent and manage enterprise fraud and financial crime effectively.

Dave Excell is Featurespace’s first Co-Founder and the man responsible for the growth and operation of the business across the Americas and oversees Featurespace’s global product strategy.

After studying at the Australian National University and the University of Cambridge, Excell began Featurespace as a concept, taking it to become a leading enterprise financial crime platform for financial institutions and technology providers. Excell is also a board member for the Technology Association of Georgia and The Knoble, bringing together networks of financial crime specialists to prevent criminals from using the world’s financial systems to profit from the suffering of others.

The second Co-founder and former Chairman was Bill Fitzgerald, who sadly passed away in 2014. A Professor of Applied Statistics and Signal Processing, and the Head of Research, in the Signal Processing Laboratory, University of Cambridge, his ground-breaking work on Bayesian statistical methodology as applied to signal and data modelling had a profound impact on the study of signal processing, both within the Department of Engineering at the University of Cambridge and internationally. He was also a renowned expert in non-linear signal processing, image restoration and medical imaging, extreme value statistics, bio-informatics, data mining and data classification. Bill was particularly interested in the applications of Sequential Monte Carlo (particle filtering) methods to signal processing and communication problems.

Fitzgerald held a BSc, MSc and Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Birmingham, England. He worked in Neutron Scattering at the Institut Laue Langevin in Grenoble, France for 7 years and was then a Professor of Physics at the ETH in Zurich for 5 years, before joining the Engineering Department in Cambridge. He was a fellow of Christ’s College, Cambridge, England, where he was Director of Studies in Engineering and a Tutor.

Many of Fitzgerald’s students have gone on to establish world-class academic, industrial and financial organizations around the world, and his research and enthusiasm continue to inspire new students in the Signal Processing Laboratory.

In a touching tribute published in Business Weekly the day after he died, Martina King, the CEO of Featurespace then as now, said:

“Bill [Fitzgerald] knew more about statistics than anyone else ever born and he remained optimistic, almost to the very end, that he could beat the odds.

The Featurespace team is dedicated to fulfilling his vision of creating an automated approach to understanding data.”

With such a person laying Featurespace’s intellectual foundations, it’s little wonder the enterprise has been a successful one, helped even more by the $107.9 million in VC funding the company has raised over seven rounds since 2012.

These are exciting times for Featurespace and companies like it. With their IP, as well as a little luck, we can dream of a drastic reduction in fraud and money laundering.

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