How Wheels Handles Fuel Card Fraud
By Lindsay Wood
December 18, 2019
Fuel card fraud manifests in many forms from internal fraud—non-fuel purchases and friends/family tank fills—to external fraud—stolen credit card data, skimming devices on fuel pumps and data breaches. Driver education goes a long way to limit these methods of fraud, yet Wheels goes further in its detection process.
Wheels’ Fuel Fraud Detection Process
Wheels monitors fueling activity through various methods to assist in reducing internal and external fraud. This includes:
- Fuel velocity reports: Every day we receive and analyze fuel velocity reports, which include robust level-three data. This data is merged with Wheels vehicle and driver data, such as tank capacity, vehicle status and purchaser to immediately identify potential fraud.
- MPG reports: These reports identify vehicles with low miles per gallon. By looking at the data over three or more months and combining this information with the velocity reports, we flag potential cases where a card is used to make excess fuel purchases over time.
- Alerts: This helps provide visibility to abnormal activity on specific fuel cards by quickly identifying transactions that exceed a preset threshold. Exceptions include high-dollar, high-gallon or multiple transactions in a day.
- Fuel Compliance dashboard: In FleetView, the Fuel Compliance dashboard provides added visibility into your fleet’s fueling patterns. Insights include incorrect fuel type, over-tank capacity, over-purchase limits, non-fuel purchases and transaction distance.
Fuel Card Supplier’s High Alerts
Similar to a consumer bank card, high alerts are triggered by the fuel card supplier when activity outside normal patterns is detected. Due to the high volumes of counterfeit fraud occurring at fueling stations across the United States, our suppliers made significant investments in fraud detection processes and analytics to stop fraud in its tracks.
The fuel card supplier alerts Wheels of unusual fueling activity on the card and the fuel card is put in ‘suspended’ status. Reasons for this may be:
- Area of use not typical in card history
- High-dollar transactions not typical in card history
- Geographically impossible times or locations between transactions
- Out of sequence, new or repeat odometer entry not typical in card history
- New or various driver identification number (DIN) entry(s) not typical in card history
- Multiple declined attempts
- Increase in number of daily attempts compared to history
If a drivers’ card is suspended in error, drivers may encounter a decline at the fuel pump. If this happens, drivers should attempt to make the payment inside at the station store. If that is not successful, they can call Wheels for assistance, anytime.
When the alert is received, we quickly work to confirm if the activity is accurate or fraudulent and notify the client. Our goal is to resolve these within in 24-48 hours to ensure drivers are not disrupted and can continue their normal course of business.
For credit card issuers and users, fraud will continue to be a topic of concern. Wheels along with our supplier partners continue to make investments to detect and minimize the impact on our customers.
Fuel card fraud is such an expansive topic. We could talk about it all day. If you’re interested in learning more about the prevalence of fuel card fraud in the fleet industry, please message Natasha at firstname.lastname@example.org or Lindsay at email@example.com.