In our series, Humans of Fundbox, we feature some of the incredible folks within our company and give them space to share their stories. Today, we’re in Tel Aviv, Israel, to meet Dean Ad, Fraud Risk Analyst.
Dean has been with Fundbox for two years. In that time, he has helped expand the company’s fraud-detection and prevention capabilities. Passionate and focused on learning every detail about how fraud works and how to stop it, he has spent his time at Fundbox getting to know the business customers we serve while learning about everything related to fraud prevention.
In this Q&A, Dean shares how he works to prevent fraud, analyze new accounts, and protect the security of our customers and the company.
Dean Ad, Fraud Risk Analyst at Fundbox.
What do you do at Fundbox?
Dean Ad: At Fundbox, I work as a Fraud Analyst. What I do is try to prevent fraud and try to keep our customers safe and keep our company safe, too. That means either trying to stop fraudulent applications that will try to abuse financial systems or halt fraudulent applications that hurt innocent people who’ve been victimized by fraudsters.
When I say “fraud” I mean unauthorized credit activity: credit fraud. Fraud occurs when someone tries to apply for credit, with the sole intent of obtaining funds, without the intent of paying them back. Within that explanation, there are a few different types of fraud. My team and I work on preventing all different types of fraud.
As a financial technology company, we take fraud and data privacy seriously. What are some of the things we do to protect Fundbox users—and ourselves?
Because of the nature of our work, I can’t give too many specific details—we wouldn’t want to give potential fraudsters any tips!
However, I can tell you a little bit. Our team does a lot of analysis and verification in order to ensure that any person applying for an account is the real person behind that information.
When it comes to data privacy, we do the best we can to keep that information safe with highly qualified tools. I wish I could say more, but part of protecting our customers is protecting exactly how we do it.
Why do you think users feel safe using Fundbox?
I spent some time working in Customer Support, so I’ve worked a lot with customers very closely. I think we have built a very solid track record with our customers.
For me, the fact that Fundbox is such a reliable company with thousands of TrustPilot ratings and positive reviews online really stands out. We can point to thousands of happy customers that say that we have changed their lives by helping their business in a time of need.
Some people do get worried about connecting a bank data source to us online. However, it’s important for those people to understand that we never, ever save or share anyone’s bank login credentials. Connecting a data source is used to help our customers receive a more accurate credit decision. If we have more information about you, then your whole business health is taken into consideration, not just one piece. I think we are pro-business here, we really try to help businesses, and they can see that.
What is your team like at Fundbox?
Our fraud team includes employees both here in Tel Aviv, Israel, where I work, and at our headquarters in San Francisco. The two parts of the team share some overlap in what we do. For example, both teams analyze new accounts, and we both occasionally speak to customers to make sure that we have the information that we need to make sure that there is no fraudulent activity.
The team here in Israel also does a lot of analysis of past attempts at fraud in order to continually improve our fraud prevention capabilities, create new tools to prevent fraud, and make sure that our fraud rules are accurate at catching all the bad guys with minimal returning of false positives. It’s sort of like fraud R&D.
For security and confidentiality reasons, I can’t give you too much detail about the team, but I can say it’s an amazingly smart group and I love being part of it.
What did you do before Fundbox? What prepared you to work in fraud?
Honestly, I didn’t set out to work in fraud, but my path brought me here. Like many Israelis, I spent time in the Israeli army. After the army, I moved to the United States, to New York, where I worked at the Israeli consulate. In Israel, typically after you finish the army, you start studying, so I studied economics in a remote university program.
I always planned to go back to Israel, and when I got an offer for a role at Fundbox, it was such a great opportunity; I decided to go for it.
I mentioned that I started in Customer Support, and that taught me everything about the product and about our systems. Over time, I started working with the fraud department, becoming a liaison between Risk, Fraud, and Support. That gave me a lot of experience with talking to customers and reviewing suspicious accounts. When there was a job opening on the Fraud team, I applied, went through the interview process, and got the job.
Being a good fraud analyst requires some strong instincts, and I’m proud of my instincts. On top of those, I’ve learned so much from people who were here for years before me. It’s been an incredible education.
What did you do in the army? Was it related to finance?
No, not at all. I was a Jumpmaster: a skydiving instructor!
I still teach people how to skydive—how to do military skydives. That was my role. It was super fun. I did a lot of jumps and worked with some of the best units in Israel. That was super cool! I’ve made over 200 jumps.
Has anything at this company surprised you?
Yes, I have definitely been surprised at times. I was thinking about that: We had a company trip to Eilat two weeks ago. I remember just standing there and realizing how many people I genuinely like at this company, how many real friends I have here, who I see outside of work. That doesn’t happen everywhere I’ve been.
The people here are really amazing. I’ve been surprised by the people here in a very good way.
Dean jumping out of a perfectly good plane.
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