Unit21 and Wonolo Announce New Partnership

September 9, 2022

Unit21 and Wonolo work together to combat the $209M in business and job opportunities fraud.

San Francisco, CA August 29, 2022 – Unit21 today announced a partnership with Wonolo to develop a platform to eliminate job marketplace fraud. Unit21 is currently at the forefront of anti-money laundering with the most trusted platform for FRAML. Its ‘detection and investigation’ tool finds fraudulent transactions for cryptocurrency exchanges, banks, lending institutions, brokerages, Fintechs, and more. Those transactions, which are automatically reported to the government, totalled more than $1.7B last year.

This partnership comes at a trying time for the gig economy and job industry, which in the midst of the pandemic, experienced fast growth. This rapid growth created a surge in fraud which saw Americans scammed out of $68M in the first quarter of 2022 alone, according to the Federal Trade Commission

A partnership with Wonolo enables the Unit21 platform to expand beyond financial fraud and into Trust and Safety for marketplaces.

Wonolo is an on-demand job marketplace that connects workers to retail, manufacturing, hospitality, and other light industrial jobs posted by businesses across the United States. Companies use the Wonolo app to post jobs. Workers use the Wonolo app to find and accept available jobs. 

As a double-sided marketplace, Wonolo has valuable insight into how to combat fraud that could affect both the workers and the companies that use the platform. 

For example, deactivated users may attempt to regain access to the app by signing up using counterfeit user information. Working with Wonolo and their available app data, Unit21 modified its platform to flag these types of events using a method called Link Analysis

Link Analysis finds commonalities between accounts such as email addresses or IP addresses. For example, if two Wonolo accounts share the same phone number and one of the accounts has been deactivated, the second account is flagged by the Unit21 system and available for review by the Wonolo Trust & Safety team.

Through Unit21, we were able to create alerts to flag users with matching or similar information to previously deactivated users. This allows our team to review and determine whether or not the individuals are a true match or if the alert was a false positive.” - Stephanie H. - Senior Manager, Trust & Safety for Wonolo

As another example, Unit21 can help combat “time theft”. Time theft essentially consists of a worker that accepts a job on the Wonolo app but doesn’t actually perform the work (or leaves before the work is complete). In an effort to curb time theft, Unit21 flags:

  • sensitive job sites (where time theft has occurred in the past),
  • repeat offenders (that are suspected of previous time theft), 

and helps ensure that workers are actually present on job sites when they use the Wonolo App.

“What made me extremely excited to work with [Unit21] was how creatively they were thinking about using our data to flag potential users who have been taking part in this behavior.” - Stephanie H. - Senior Manager, Trust & Safety for Wonolo

These days, Wonolo and Unit21 are focusing on the most common issue plaguing job sites: fake job postings. Wonolo’s Trust and Safety team wants to catch fake job postings as early as possible in the job posting process. Unit21 is testing rules on their platform that generate alerts based on phrases known to be fraudulent on job postings.

“This is something we have been doing for clients like Twitter for years in the social media context. We updated our tool to look for flagged language in jobs such as ‘get rich quick’”  - Tyler A. - Senior Product Manager, Trust & Safety for Unit21

About Unit21

Unit21 helps protect businesses against adversaries with a platform for detecting and managing money laundering, fraud, and other sophisticated risks across multiple industries. Visit unit21.ai or follow @unit21inc on Twitter.

About Wonolo

Wonolo is an on-demand job marketplace that connects over one million workers (“Wonoloers”) to retail, manufacturing, hospitality, and other types of hourly jobs posted by thousands of businesses across the United States. Wonolo is on a mission to make work flexible and fulfilling for everyone, while helping businesses efficiently fill local job opportunities. For more information, visit www.wonolo.com

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