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SEB to host Innovation Challenge on digital fraud prevention

Digital fraud affects everyone – nation-states, companies and private individuals. Nor can it be stopped by any individual actor. All forces for good must work together. That is the basic premise behind the upcoming SEB Open Innovation Challenge that starts on Friday, 15 October.

“At SEB we are doing everything we can to protect our customers and the bank from cyber-attacks, fraud and financial crime. We now want to expand our efforts to encompass previously unfathomed solutions, novel ideas and creative suggestions that can help us combat this problem,” says Adam Österman, R&D, in R&D & Transformation, CIO, who is the initiative-taker behind the challenge.  

SEB Open Innovation Challenge will begin on Friday in conjunction with the national initiative Digital@idag. Invitations to the challenge will be spread via SEB’s own channels and on social media. On Monday, 18 October, a kick-off event will be aired live during which participants will have an opportunity to ask questions about the challenge.   

In connection with the invitation, SEB has produced a film in which Superintendent Jan Olsson, from the Swedish Police National IT Crime Centre (Noa), Jaana Nyfjord, Technology Operations Manager at Spotify, and Tony Kylberg, Head of Group Security & Cyber Defence at SEB, talk about the importance of collaboration to fight the growing societal problem posed by cyber crime.

In the film Jan Olsson notes among other things that every year roughly a quarter-million instances of fraud are reported in Sweden and that the police only have the opportunity to investigate 5 per cent of these. He notes that the problem lies not with the technical security of, e.g., BankID or Swish. These are secure solutions that have not been hacked. Criminals instead have their focus on hacking us as individuals directly.

“In the near term we need to help customers protect themselves from the manipulation they are subject to. In the long term it is about collaboration between nation-states, authorities and companies to protect the digital infrastructure that we are all dependent on,” says Tony Kylberg.

The application period we be open through 30 November, and thereafter five finalists will be selected. On 10 December these will then present their ideas to a jury made up of experts from SEB, Swedish police and the business sector. The winner will win a prize of EUR 10,000.

Apart from the prospect of finding new and previously unfathomed solutions, Adam Österman hopes the challenge will help strengthen SEB’s brand as an innovative company. Research shows that this, in turn, strengthens the internal innovation climate, he says.

Malin Brant-Lundin, Head of Employer Branding, also hopes that the challenge will get more technical specialists to open their eyes to SEB.

“We need to attract IT and tech talents, especially in the area of cybersecurity,” she says. “We hope this initiative will contribute to that.”

See the film here