New Capability Prevents Criminals from Registering Unauthorized Device and Phone Number to Receive One Time Passcodes Commonly Used to Approve Sensitive Transactions

SOMERSET, N.J., Dec. 15, 2021 – 1Kosmos, the only company that unifies identity proofing and passwordless authentication, today announced it has added new SIM (subscriber identity module) binding capabilities that prevent online fraud to the 1Kosmos BlockID distributed digital identity platform. Using a combination of SIM detection and SMS verification, BlockID validates a user’s mobile number against the number registered with their financial institution or employer to protect against attacks that attempt to register an unauthorized device/phone number on a customer’s account. 

In 2020, criminals stole more than $100M in the US via SIM Swap attacks, including sports personalities, online influencers, famous musicians and their families. Meanwhile, SIM swap fraud reports have increased by 400% in the past five years according to Which? Also, the Federal Communications Commission recently announced it plans to begin a formal rulemaking process to stop SIM-swapping attacks, citing the growing danger and complaints from victims themselves. 

BlockID’s new device binding feature is being deployed by one of India’s most popular financial institutions to deter online banking related fraud. The RBI (Reserve Bank of India), the equivalent of the United States Federal Reserve, released an advisory on October 13, 2021 to expedite the implementation of device binding to prevent internet retail banking fraud.    

“Mobile devices have become a popular and effective authentication mechanism for online banking, payments and ecommerce applications, but they are vulnerable to account takeover attacks if the phone number of record is changed by a fraudster,” said Mike Engle, CSO for 1Kosmos. “BlockID now prevents criminals from transferring a user’s authorized phone number to another device in order to access their accounts.”  

SIM binding is a new feature available on the BlockID app that allows customers to link their account only to a phone number registered with an institution or employer. During registration on the BlockID app, the user is challenged to verify their phone number. A combination of SIM detection and SMS verification is used by the BlockID platform to validate a user’s mobile number against the number registered with their service provider. 

“The recent Reserve Bank of India directive on implementing device binding to prevent internet retail banking fraud is forcing financial institutions in India and around the world to deploy this capability,” said Siddharth Gandhi, Chief Operating Officer, APAC for 1Kosmos. “The 1Kosmos cloud based service and self service BlockID mobile app make it fast and cost effective for banks to roll out device binding to their customer base with zero new infrastructure investments.”  

Availability

1Kosmos BlockID with device binding is available immediately from 1Kosmos and its business partners worldwide.

About 1Kosmos

1Kosmos helps companies unify identity proofing and authentication to provide workers, customers and citizens frictionless onboarding and passwordless access to data and services. The FIDO2 and NIST certified BlockID distributed digital identity platform creates a portable digital wallet for easy access to online services. It virtually eliminates the risk of identity impersonation, account takeover, and transaction fraud by combining strong authentication with strong identity enrollment. BlockID performs millions of authentications daily for some of the largest banks, telecommunications and healthcare organizations in the world. The company is funded by Forgepoint Capital with headquarters in Somerset, New Jersey. For more information, visit www.1kosmos.com and follow us  on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Press Contact

Marc Gendron
Marc Gendron PR for 1Kosmos
marc@mgpr.net