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Avoid The Fast-Growing Threat of Parcel Shipping Fraud to Maintain an Efficient Supply Chain

Your company’s supply chain is hard enough to manage on a good day. When you add in the influence of bad actors and other disruptors, things can quickly go from good to bad. Shippers need to constantly deal with threats and barriers to operate an efficient supply chain by overcoming market risks, maintaining compliance, and adhering to regulations. And lately, they’ve also increasingly had to deal with the costly problem of parcel fraud.

Already growing fast, ecommerce exploded during the pandemic. With the increase came a lot more small parcel shipments handled by FedEx, UPS, the USPS, and other regional carriers. Soon after, unfortunately, have come some clever people looking to take advantage of the situation through parcel fraud.

How does parcel fraud happen?

All shipping operations face many external threats, ranging from physical theft and pilferage during transit to collusion and falsification of paperwork and invoices.

Large volumes of parcels (and money spent) managed through complicated shipping networks make logistics operations a prime target for fraudsters. The fact that many companies operate their supply chain in decentralized ways magnifies the opportunity for those with illicit intentions.

The source of parcel fraud can vary:

  • Internal: such as when employees ship unauthorized packages.
  • External: such as when thieves use stolen account numbers.
  • Carrier ”mistakes” that result in large invoice errors and unnecessary expense.

(This article has four examples of the large cost impact to unsuspecting shippers that caught significant parcel fraud within their own company – read it here.)

Parcel and other shipping-related fraud can happen to companies that are not paying close enough attention to what’s going on in their operation. The good news is that’s a problem quickly remedied by technology, and in many cases, such as with parcel, by simply looking closer at the data.

Here’s how Parcel Spend Intelligence identifies and prevents parcel fraud

Leading parcel BI tools, like Parcel Spend Intelligence from TransImpact, provide out-of-the-box fraud prevention tools to any company that ships small packages.

Here are a few ways:

  1. With automated risk alerts: Using data pulled automatically from carrier invoices, Parcel Spend Intelligence scans for anomalous shipments indicating potential fraud and sends alerts to the user. This function quickly highlights when a package or cost appears suspect, so corrective action can be swift. Since not all fraud is the same, alerts can be customed based on the user’s specific business and shipping patterns.
  2. By leveraging predictive analytics: Using advanced data and analytics, Parcel Spend Intelligence can forecast potential future fraud risks based on historical data and ongoing trends. With such future visibility, shippers can proactively implement measures to mitigate and be better prepared in the event of unusual behavior. Odd spikes in uncommon surcharges or shipments in certain lanes are two patterns analytics can quickly identify.
  3. Through comprehensive visibility: Transparency is necessary for every shipping operation. With pre-built and intuitive dashboards and configurable reports, Parcel Spend Intelligence offers users both high-level and deep insights into their parcel network operations. This includes metrics ranging from carrier service performance to shipping costs. These provide granular views that can surface unusual trends that may need attention.
  4. With enhanced security protocols: Parcel Spend Intelligence improves security in the day-to-day operations, too, by connecting to shippers’ label manifesting systems. For example, the platform can ingest the known activity for a shipper and then isolate packages that were not part of a package provided to the carrier. The extra security measure helps prevent parcel fraud by identifying orders that were not known to the shipper and easily determining their legitimacy.
  5. By offering collaboration and knowledge sharing: Finally, Parcel Spend Intelligence fosters collaboration and knowledge sharing among stakeholders across all users’ supply chain ecosystems. As a trusted partner and fraud expert, TransImpact proactively supports the exchange of information and insights related to parcel delivery and fraud prevention. This collaboration is undergirded by the anonymized data from and visibility into over $3 billion in annual parcel spend across more than 1,000 parcel shippers. As a whole, it enhances the industry’s collective awareness of emerging fraud trends.

Technology as the solution to supply chain risks, compliance, and fraud

Companies unaware of how technology can mitigate malintent in their supply chain, such as fraud, may someday soon learn an expensive lesson. This is why TransImpact is partnering with Overhaul to help customers further increase compliance and secure their supply chains.

Overhaul is a leading provider of visibility and risk monitoring solutions. Their advanced platform tracks shipments in real-time using AI to better identify and respond to threats. Overhaul has also invested heavily in research and development, exploring emerging technologies such as IoT sensors and machine learning algorithms to stay ahead of the curve. Paired with TransImpact’s Parcel Spend Intelligence, Overhaul makes it that much easier to keep your parcels protected.

Fraudsters are persistent and always improving their tactics. Capitalizing on advanced technology such as TransImpact’s Parcel Spend Intelligence and Overhaul’s shipping risk monitoring solutions is the only way to avoid becoming a victim.

Contact to learn more about how Parcel Spend Intelligence can prevent fraud in your parcel shipping operation.

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