There are a variety of new tools being used in contact centers today and perhaps one of the most promising is voice biometrics. Today, NICE Systems, a provider of both contact center software and fraud prevention, released a voice biometrics product as part of its Contact Center Fraud Prevention product.
Like a fingerprint, each person's voice is unique, which can be used to identify known fraudsters, says Ori Bach, director of solution management for NICE. The voice biometrics system cross-references the callers against a list of known criminals. The system also analyzes the rate of calls coming into the contact center, talking patterns of callers and emotion. Fraudsters, for example, often yell at call center agents in an attempt to portray an angry customer, coercing the agent into agreeing to the fraudster's demands.
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The move was a natural progression for NICE Systems, says Sheila McGee-Smith, a unified communications analyst. NICE focuses on banking and financial institution security, which is where it developed the voice biometrics technology, now it's broadening the technology to serve its contact center business.
Contact center service providers are beefing up their systems in specialized ways. One trend is that instead of subjecting all customers to these enhanced security procedures, instead alerts are created to identify which callers should be screened for additional authentication. For example, caller ID systems can alert the call center agent to whether the caller is calling from an unknown number. Queries of the phone system can inform the call center as to whether a stolen cell phone is being used. If a flag is cued, then the call center operator may take additional authentication measures, such as using the voice biometrics. Don Van Doren, president of Vanguard Communications, a unified communications consultant, adds that voice biometric systems can have flaws too - weak connections, cell phones and having a robust voice registry of criminals are all challenges