Continuing a trend of card networks, payment processors, information companies and data aggregators snapping up antifraud technology providers to add value to their offerings, Equifax late last week announced it has agreed to acquire Boise, Idaho-based Kount for $640 million.
Kount has been providing fraud prevention for e-commerce merchants via its platform since it launched in 2007. As a repository of incredible amounts of data, credit bureaus have become a source of information that can be used to establish digital identity. Adding antifraud capabilities as a way to take advantage of that data and offer more products to their customer makes sense.
In the past several years alone, TransUnion acquired iovation in a similar move, Mastercard and Visa acquired antifraud technology providers (NuData Security and Verifi, respectively) and LexisNexis Risk Solutions, via its parent RELX, nabbed ThreatMetrix and Emailage (RELX is also parent of Card Not Present).
According to Equifax, as businesses continue to go digital—a trend that Covid-19 massively accelerated this year—expanding their digital identity and antifraud capabilities is vital for their customers, who need to better understand who is on the other end of a digital connection.
“As digital migration accelerates, managing authentication and online fraud while optimizing the consumer’s experience has become one of our customers’ top challenges,” said Mark W. Begor, CEO of Equifax. “The acquisition of Kount will expand Equifax’s differentiated data assets to bring global businesses the information and solutions they need to establish identity trust online.”