Western Union is committed to playing our part in moving money around the world with integrity, so that our customers, our partners, and our communities are supported by a global financial system they can trust. To this end, we work with customers, regulators, and partners to mitigate the risks posed by financial crime and maintain the integrity of our financial infrastructure.
We are committed to protecting our consumers against fraud, working diligently to keep our services out of the hands of those who would use them to do harm, and maintaining a secure environment for transactions.
Protecting Customers and Combatting Illicit Activity
Our Global Consumer Anti-Fraud Program is designed to help protect our consumers from becoming victims of fraud, while also helping to prevent criminals from using our services to carry out fraudulent schemes. In 2021, our reported consumer fraud globally decreased by 10%, a trend we believe is a direct result of our focus on enhancing our compliance capabilities and our investments in personnel, technology, and other compliance infrastructure.
To reinforce the trust on which our business is based, we also make combating illicit activity a priority. Through our legal and regulatory compliance efforts, we seek to strengthen the world’s financial system to create a trusted environment in which consumers can transact with confidence. For example, as bad actors become increasingly savvy in moving money to pursue illicit ends, we are constantly adapting and evolving our technology and collaboration efforts to enable a more sophisticated level of detection and deterrence against human trafficking. In 2021 alone, Western Union’s compliance team assisted in more than 600 human trafficking investigations.
We know our efforts to stop illicit activity are amplified when we work together with external partners who share the same goals. Our collaborations include sharing techniques, strategies, and intelligence to combat threats posed by international criminal organizations, extremist networks, and bad actors, while respecting privacy principles.
Doing the Right Thing with Technology and Data
Western Union takes our ethical, legal, and regulatory obligations regarding data protection seriously, and continuously review and improve our programs with the goal of doing the right thing with technology and data. Our cybersecurity program leverages a defense-in-depth strategy to proactively identify and remediate potential cybersecurity risks. In addition, we provide our employees with mandatory annual cybersecurity and data privacy training along with monthly phishing simulations.
We strive to go above and beyond our own immediate data privacy and protection obligations to help keep the financial system and our customers safe. We believe privacy is increasingly about customer choice, and we will work to ensure the data our consumers, employees, and partners entrust us with is managed responsibly and securely. It is through our robust fraud prevention, compliance, and cybersecurity functions that we are best able to serve our customers and promote a culture of integrity that transcends our business requirements.