A new study from Cifas has revealed that 75% of young people have been used as ‘money mules’ to transfer the proceeds of crime by others in and out of their bank accounts. The study found that from January to September this year, there were 8,652 cases of 18-24-year-olds having their bank accounts exploited by criminals. In this blog post we examine the research and explain how HooYu Investigate can help spot suspicious mule patterns.

These young people, often students from poorer backgrounds, are often targeted because they are short on money and need cash fast, praying on their vulnerability. Social media adverts, offering cash fast for little work, is just one of the ways criminals target their victims. The types of jobs advertised are hugely misleading, such as “financial manager needed”, requiring a UK bank account.

Cifas and FFA UK have launched a campaign, “Don’t be Fooled”, to help deter young people from become a victim of a money mule trap. But in the meantime, how can financial services firms use new investigation technologies to help spot suspicious mule patterns?

HooYu Investigate is a unique data visualisation platform that enables fraud teams to explore fraud networks by analysing relationships between people and addresses.

  • Linked Address Analysis – have your customers been “muling” at previous addresses?
  • Co-occupant Analysis – is ‘muling” being practiced by multiple members of a household?
  • Shortest Path Analysis – how is “muling” spreading? What is the connection between different mules?

At HooYu Investigate, our aim is to help fraud investigators quickly see the pattern behind the data and make analysis quicker and easier to identify and shut down money mule rings. To find out more about HooYu Investigate, contact us here.