Booking Warning: Fraud Jumps 900 Percent Due to AI

Booking.com

Booking warns that artificial intelligence is causing a huge increase in fraud. Marnie Wilking, the company's head of internet security, said there had been a 18 to 500% increase in fraud over the past 900 months.

In particular, she highlighted the rise of fraud involving people disclosing their data since generative AI tools like Chetjipity became available.

Attackers are using artificial intelligence to create fake emails that are far better than ever before. Scammers often target sites like Booking and Airbnb because they allow users to list their own accommodation, she says.

Once someone pays, the scammers either disappear without a trace – leaving the customer without a place to stay – or try to extort more money through follow-up messages. These types of scams have been around for decades, but they often carry telltale signs, like spelling mistakes.

Speaking at a technology conference in Toronto, Wilking said AI makes it harder to detect fraud because it can generate realistic images and much more accurate text, in multiple languages ​​like entering a code sent to a phone - as "the best way to combat identity theft". . She also emphasized the need for increased caution when clicking on links.

Despite criticism of fraudsters' use of artificial intelligence, Wilking said the technology also allows Booking to quickly weed out fake hotels trying to scam people.

"We've put AI models in place to detect and block them before they appear on the site or remove them before any bookings are made," she said.

Jane Hawkes, a travel industry consumer protection expert, said travel providers needed to "step up their efforts" to warn people about scams.

"They also have a responsibility to advise travelers how to minimize the risk of fraud," she said.

She recommended booking a package deal, rather than booking flights and accommodation separately, and using a credit card for maximum protection.

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