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Trax, TriumphPay Partner to Prevent Transportation Fraud

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Trax, TriumphPay Partner to Prevent Transportation Fraud

Trax and TriumphPay executives co-present strategies for mitigating transportation fraud risks, while gaining end-to-end visibility into carbon emissions for reporting and reduction purposes.

Trax Technologies, the global leader in Transportation Spend Management (TSM) solutions, and strategic partner TriumphPay, the premier payments network for freight brokers, factors, shippers, and carriers, are educating industry leaders about methods for reducing the risk of fraud within transportation payments. With U.S. business logistics costs reaching a staggering $2.3 trillion in 2022 and fraud activity increasing 57% in Q2 2023 compared to Q2 2022, transportation payments fraud is a huge area of concern for global supply chain leaders.

Trax and TriumphPay are co-presenting during the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP) EDGE 2023 Supply Chain Conference and Exhibition Mon., Oct. 2, 11 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. EST. During the session, “Using Data & Analytics to Improve Carrier Relationships,” leaders from both companies will discuss solutions to multifaceted challenges, including transportation fraud prevention.

Trax and TriumphPay are developing a seamless integration between Trax’s global freight audit solution and TriumphPay’s payments network to create a highly secure payments platform for its Fortune 1000 customer base. This integration will create greater financial flexibility and improved working capital for both shippers and logistics service providers, while reducing the risk of fraud within transportation payments.

The Trax team is available to meet with CSCMP Edge 2023 attendees following the panel presentation at Trax booth #101. Attendees can learn more about how credible freight audit and payment processing tools and data utilization can support fraud reduction, while optimizing shipping costs and transportation carbon emissions.

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TriumphPay and Trax Technologies Partner, Reducing the Fraud Risks for Transportation Payments  

TriumphPay invests $9.7 million in Trax and former Trax President Josh Bouk joins TriumphPay as executive vice president, chief partnership officer.

Trax Technologies (Trax), the global leader in Transportation Spend Management (TSM) solutions, partnered with TriumphPay, enabling Trax to offer enhanced payment solutions as part of its transportation spend management platform, while integrating with the TriumphPay payments network. As part of the strategic partnership, TBK Bank, SSB d/b/a TriumphPay invested $9.7 million in Trax, providing greater financial flexibility to shippers and logistics service providers while reducing transportation payments fraud risks.

Upon completion of the technical integration, all payments made by Trax will be made via the TriumphPay network, providing automated payments, fraud protection, funds security and flexibility in the timing of payments for shippers and carriers.

The strategic relationship with Trax advances TriumphPay’s journey into the shipper vertical, where former Trax President Josh Bouk will be a valuable asset. Bouk joins TriumphPay as executive vice president, chief partnership officer for the premier payments network for freight brokers, factors, shippers and carriers in the North American trucking industry.

Bouk will lead TriumphPay’s approach to the shipper market, developing and growing strategic ecosystem alliances, and further establishing TriumphPay as the most flexible, global and secure transportation payment solution in the world.

Bouk joins TriumphPay with over 20 years of experience as a proven executive leader in providing expense management and payment solutions at the global enterprise level. Before his tenure with Trax, Bouk was vice president of global sales and marketing for the expense management division of Cass Information Systems.


Fighting Fraud Within the Supply Chain: 3 Tips for Executives

The COVID-19 pandemic brought many changes to global markets. Production of goods and services slowed down dramatically due to company protocols, local laws, labor shortages, and other predicaments. Fraud is another factor business leaders have to deal with daily. 

This guide will show executives three common types of fraud and three ways to reduce them.

What Types of Fraud Are Most Common?

Fraud can occur in the supply chain from the beginning to the end of the process. A dishonest employee or outsider can find ways to act in their interests, causing backlogs and headaches for the company.

These three types of fraud are among the most common in supply chains and ones that business leaders should watch out for.

  • Theft

With today’s technology, criminals can be sophisticated in committing fraud. However, sometimes it can be as simple as stealing. The problem can come from outside thieves looking to steal items from a truck or warehouse, but that is not the most prominent reason. One study found that employee theft accounted for 90% of significant losses in companies.

Businesses selling high-priced goods like electronics and designer clothing are especially vulnerable to theft. The global chip shortage has significantly impacted the gaming industry, leading to PlayStation 5 consoles being a target of thieves worldwide. People are stealing PS5s off trucks and porches, and sometimes the problem comes from employees within the supply chain.

  • Bribery

Companies can catch thieves and their employees stealing, but sometimes the crime is more subtle and challenging to identify. Bribery is a problem for businesses and can occur at all levels.

A related issue with bribery is people getting kickbacks for the deals they make.

Bribery typically involves collusion between two companies, and external financial incentives entice companies to choose one supplier or contractor over another.

Bribery causes multiple headaches for businesses and the supply chain. In most countries, the federal and local governments have anti-bribery laws in place and will prosecute wrongdoing. A company using a supplier found guilty of bribery may have to switch to another, causing supply chain disruptions, unwanted backlogs in production, and potential legal issues.

  • Cyber Theft

The pandemic brought issues to the supply chain with backlogs and worker shortages, but another significant impact has been the increase in cyber theft.

Cybercriminals have become better at phishing, malware, and ransomware attacks. These attacks come with the rise in remote work and put companies at risk. Employees may use their own hardware with less protection than the computers they’d use in the office.

Since 2020, cyber threats have increased dramatically. About 81% of companies worldwide say they saw an increase in cyber threats and 79% say a cyber incident caused downtime during a peak season. These cyber incidents are critical for companies because the fraudster doesn’t have to have direct contact with company property or an employee. Cybercriminals can engage in fraud from anywhere in the world.

How Can Executives Fight Fraud?

Whether bribery, theft, or cyber crime, there are multiple ways fraud disrupts supply chains and costs companies time and money. How can executives combat this problem? What strategies can businesses implement to make their processes more secure against criminals? Business leaders can use the following strategies to fight back against fraud.

  • Reporting System

Reporting employee misconduct can be a challenging task for many people. They may feel conflicted and unsure of what they see. Creating a system of accountability for everybody can raise levels of trust and respect inside any office, warehouse, or organization.

There are numerous ways companies make their reporting systems easy and accessible to everybody. They can put the filing online in a designated web portal or have employees write a complaint to a specific email address. Opening this system 24 hours a day ensures a worker can file a complaint without feeling pressure or anxiety that someone is watching them.

Reporting theft is a practical way to prevent it from happening in the future. Fraud occurs in private industry, governments, and other sectors, and one form of accountability is whistleblowers. A whistleblower is someone who brings a claim under the False Claims Act of 1863. These claims come from current and former employees with confidential information who elect to report wrongdoing.

Whistleblowers could come from within an organization or they could be one company calling out another. For example, a business could file a whistleblower complaint against another company conducting a billing scheme. Price gouging is a common form of fraud, and companies should use whistleblower laws to their advantage to reduce fraud in the supply chain.

  • Asset Tracking

Asset tracking is an excellent way to reduce fraud. Waste and fraud can occur within inventories so that proper management can come to the rescue. Companies can track assets using barcodes to stay one step ahead of thieves, including the ones coming from within the organization. Barcode tracking is a way for businesses to prevent fraud and save time. Managers using it don’t have to enter data manually if the computer can track them.

Companies leveraging technology find significant benefits to supply chain functions and their bottom line. One way a business can improve efficiency and reduce fraud is with telematics. This method involves automated data collection and transmission. Telematics is prominent in industries like long-haul trucking because it enhances safety with vehicle fleets.

Vehicles fitted with telematics devices can track statistics like speed, routes taken, sudden starting and stopping, and more. This technology can save a company money by monitoring how long drivers sit idly and optimizing paths, meaning quicker arrival times and less money spent on gas. Telematics can reduce fraud with fleet tracking, dashcam footage, and asset recovery with GPS tracking.

  • Blockchain

With cyber theft on the rise, one way companies can fight back is with blockchain technology. Businesses in many industries have started using blockchain because of its reliability in protecting information. Using blockchain is cost-effective and decreases fraud because it records transactions that fraudsters cannot secretly alter once they record it. Any change made in the blockchain is available for others to see.

Every transaction on the blockchain has a timestamp and a chronological logging system. This feature prevents theft in the supply chain because no fraudster – inside or outside – can duplicate transactions. Companies can reduce costs with the blockchain because of its automation capabilities. Smart technology in the form of blockchain contracts can monitor transactions. Blockchain means less reliance on third parties and less room for fraud.

Finding and Fighting Fraud in the Supply Chain

In today’s world, anything can affect the supply chain. Fraud happens daily, and a pandemic can wreak havoc and turns industries upside down. Fortunately, there are ways to locate and mitigate fraud. Executives should watch for these three types of fraud and use these three tips to reduce theft in their supply chain.

retail banking frontline

Safety First: How to Handle Supplier Banking Data

2020 was an eventful year for business payments. We saw expansive leaps in digitization, accompanied by new challenges. Remote work forced accounts payable departments to pay more suppliers electronically, primarily by ACH or direct deposit. In many cases, companies began making ACH payments before they could adequately secure remote networks and environments and without new protocols and procedures to ensure the secure handling of supplier bank account information. The rush to pay suppliers electronically in the new remote environment exposed them to various fraud schemes, targeting ACH payments. While ACH fraud was already on the rise, cybercriminals exploited the pandemic and the rapid shift away from paper check with greater voracity than ever.

Knowing the increased risk with ACH payments is critical when you receive requests to change bank account information. According to our internal data, these requests are common, with suppliers changing bank accounts roughly every four years. But change requests are also the most common avenue for fraud, specifically VEC (Vendor Email Compromise). In this type of attack, criminals hack into supplier systems, monitor invoice flow, identify a potential weak spot among the supplier’s customers and then reach out to someone in accounts payable to request a bank account update. Often, they time this sort of change just ahead of a large payment.  If successful, they route the payment to an account they’ve set up only to close it once they receive the funds.

AP teams stay vigilant when they receive requests to change banking information. But really, they always need to handle bank account data securely. If this data is intercepted, it gives fraudsters fuel to make their schemes more credible. IT departments need to secure company networks and environments. AP departments need to have stringent, repeatable processes for collecting, validating, and storing the information.

Collecting the data

Start with identifying the information you need to store. In addition to the routing, account numbers, and other remittance information, you may want to add security questions or other uniquely identifying information.

This information should never be transmitted via email, which is extremely unsafe. It’s shocking how open people are with the information they share using that communication method. There’s a lot of naivete surrounding the notion of business email compromise, or BEC. The FBI documented over $26 billion in reported losses from BECs between June 2016 and July 2019. According to the 2020 AFP Payments and Fraud Control Survey Report, BEC schemes were the most common type of fraud attack last year, with 75 percent of organizations experiencing an attack and 54 percent reporting financial losses.

With such attacks on the rise, banking data really should be sent via a secure portal or encrypted email. It’s tempting—especially at the beginning of a new supplier relationship—to want to extend trust and make enabling them for payment fast and easy. Don’t do it. Safety comes first. Make it clear to your supplier that you’re doing this to protect their company and yours. They should understand and appreciate that—it’s a yellow flag if you encounter pushback on that request. While it’s uncommon for Vendor Email Compromise (a subset of BECs) to occur during initial onboarding, requests to make exceptions to processes (especially if combined with a sense of urgency) are hallmarks of phishing or fraud attempts. Make sure your team is well trained, so alarm bells go off in that scenario.

It’s not just during the supplier enablement process that this information needs to be protected. Suppliers routinely send invoices that include bank routing and account information via email. Again, this is well-intentioned—the aim is to make it easier for the customer to pay them, but it’s also risky. Using a secure portal is the best solution.

When accepting sensitive information over the phone, be sure to have phone validation procedures in place to ensure the person you’re talking to is an authorized representative of the supplier.

Validating and securing

When you’re setting up a relationship with the supplier for the first time, AP should work with procurement to validate all the contract information. They may also want to use a third-party tool or service provider that connects into banking networks to validate and authenticate account identity and ownership. There are many such tools on the market.

If you’re switching an existing supplier from check to ACH, you may already have some visibility into their banking data as another way you can cross-check their information before making changes.

Once validated, information must be securely stored. Where housed on paper, companies should implement a level of physical protection such as locked in a file cabinet, but we know files are often kept in a folder on someone’s desk or—in the age of remote work—someone’s car or home. Many companies keep supplier data in spreadsheets. If someone were to intercept that information, it would be in peril.

When storing supplier banking information in an ERP system, ensure access is tightly controlled through strict permissions workflows and frequent audits of current user activity.

As traditionally check-heavy companies rush to meet the demands of electronic payments, they may miss critical steps necessary to safeguard supplier banking data and should partner with their IT, Security and Compliance teams to build a robust system of access, monitoring, and review. Outsourcing the responsibility to a payment provider is another consideration to make where resources and skillset are limited.

With the pace of change and new security threats upon us, focus on worse-case scenarios may leave you feeling helpless and overwhelmed. Preparation is key to successfully managing change. Identifying these scenarios will help you predict and prepare for the challenges and pitfalls ahead as you safely transform your accounts payable flow.


Angela Anastasakis is the SVP of Operations and Customer Success for Nvoicepay, a FLEETCOR Company.   She has more than 30 years of leadership experience in operations and product support. At Nvoicepay, Angela has been instrumental in leading Operations through rapid growth, while maintaining their 98% support satisfaction rating through outstanding service.


How Blockchain Can Fight Counterfeiting and Fraud

A recent report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and the European Union’s Intellectual Property Office shows that imported counterfeit goods raked in $509 billion in 2016 — nearly 3.3% of all global imports for that year. To fight back against the rising tide of knockoffs threatening their brands, companies are turning to blockchain technology to create more transparent supply chains.

Blockchain is a distributed, decentralized ledger technology controlled by smart contracts and regulated by a consensus protocol. The ledger automatically records every transaction, and every record it creates is unalterable. Depending on exactly how one uses the ledger, it can be classified as permissioned, public, or fit for purpose.

Within a brand’s supply chain, a blockchain ledger can manage a variety of activity from automating contract compliance between entities via smart contracts to tracking products from manufacturing to distribution. The ledger eliminates supply chain ambiguities and creates transparency that ensures companies and customers get the quality for which they pay.

Blockchain’s Value in Existing Supply Chains

The value of modernizing supply chains with blockchain isn’t just theory. Major brands have already begun partnering with tech firms and other entities in response to rising demands for improved brand protection. LVMH (Louis Vuitton SE), for instance, working closely with Microsoft and ConsenSys, has created Aura Ledger to provide proof of authenticity of luxury items and trace their origins from raw materials to point of sale and beyond to the used-goods markets.

Throughout the retail industry, companies like eBay are starting to offer product authentication as a value-added service. Currently, the company authenticates only handbags due to rising concerns from customers about their authenticity. However, eBay plans to expand authentication to additional luxury items that might be subject to counterfeit.

In agriculture, the blockchain-based Grain Discovery streamlines transactions between farmers and buyers, making it easier for them to form new partnerships. In the pharmaceutical industry, distributors have formed the MediLedger consortium to track the provenance of pharmaceuticals and stem the counterfeit drug market worth more than $75 billion annually.

In virtually every industry, suppliers and distributors are turning to blockchain technology to lower their risk of fraud. A decentralized, immutable record of every product’s journey can help verify authenticity — or lack thereof.

Blockchain as a Force Against Fraud

Companies that worry about counterfeit versions of their products have options to address the issue. When implemented together, the following steps can help mitigate risk and inspire confidence among companies and consumers alike:

Establish a secure supply chain network.

For blockchain to successfully transform a company’s supply chain, every business entity along the chain must agree to participate. That makes establishing a network of trusted partners the most important step toward securing products.

For example, the jewelry consortium TrustChain, which operates on IBM’s blockchain platform, only works because the group includes the mines that produce jewels, manufacturers that refine them, and retailers that sell them.

Given the rise of counterfeit purchases, most companies with strong brands are looking to work with their suppliers to prevent fraud. The momentum of such efforts increases when every stakeholder in the supply chain sees the value and signs up to actively participate in the efforts.

Choose the tags most suited for the brand and product.

Only with the right tagging technology can blockchain technology track every product along its journey. Through various IoT devices, tags can detect diversions, liquid leaks, vibrations, package openings, tilt, excessive force, and more.

Companies have several options, such as smart tags and high-resolution signatures that digitally relate products to the blockchain. Purpose-fit tags that have been developed to track shipments at the container, pallet, and package levels further help. Companies can also employ decentralized identifiers (DIDs) that are universally resolvable and globally visible to stakeholders throughout the supply chain.

This topic holds great interest across many industries. The RFID Lab at Auburn University recently announced the Chain Integration Project (or CHIP) launch, a project focused on finding ways for retail and apparel companies to communicate with their suppliers about tracking product inventory at the item level using radio frequency identification tags and blockchain. The project has attracted global companies across many industries due to the applicability across supply chains outside of retail and apparel.

Some products don’t need to be tracked with such intricate detail, while others should be tagged to track every moment of their journeys. Determine what tagging technology makes the most sense, adds business value, and is easiest to manage along the entire supply chain.

Encourage customers to be part of the solution.

When customers clearly and directly benefit from a company’s use of a blockchain-enabled supply chain, getting more partners to join the consortium becomes easier. However, brands can’t expect all end users to automatically jump on board.

When eBay released its authentication program for handbags, it did so in response to a need its customers had expressed. To entice sellers to participate, it offers several incentives if they sign up to authenticate their products.

Before long, the streamlined processes and unprecedented transparency that blockchain provides will be more than enough to encourage participation. Until then, make it more attractive through bonuses and other rewards in order to incentivize users and increase customer stickiness.

Unleash IoT, AI, and ML to actively fight fraud.

Protecting against counterfeiting and fraud isn’t always a passive exercise. With blockchain, companies can unleash the potential of IoT, artificial intelligence, and machine learning to actively prevent fraudulent transactions.

For instance, customers can scan product tags to verify their authenticity or compare images of the product against its stored signatures. Proof of purchase and other transaction details can be cryptographically linked to the buyer and product and then subsequently uploaded to the blockchain.

Any product that bears a brand’s name but can’t be tracked to its manufacturer would be considered counterfeit. A company can ensure, in real time, that it receives compensation for every product sold with its name on it.

The reported value of fraudulent goods that hit the global market is expected to continue rising, but companies are no longer helpless in the face of counterfeiters. As more industries and their supply chains embrace blockchain technology, counterfeit goods will no longer have a place in any market.


Mohan Venkataraman is the chief technology officer of Chainyard, a blockchain consulting company focused on delivering production solutions that address supply chain, financial services, transportation, government, and manufacturer pain points. With more than 20 years of proven experience, Mohan has extensive skills in software engineering, governance best practices, and industry models. With exposure to more than 70 clients, he has a clear focus on understanding client needs and aligning technology and business priorities to deliver value. His current interests include blockchain, cloud solutions, big data, service-oriented architecture, governance and integration competency center establishment, and enterprise architecture, with a focus in telecom media, technology, insurance, retail, healthcare, and life sciences industries.