case study

Multi Service Fuel Card Reduces Fraud Claims by 40% with Unit21



Multi Service Fuel Card, wholly owned subsidiary of Shell, is a legacy in the fuel payment industry, born out of the vision of an over-the-road truck driver in 1978. With its mission to generate growth for its people and business, Multi Service Fuel Card seeks out the most innovative solutions for process improvement and customer experience.

In its quest to improve its fraud detection, the company turned to Unit21. To tell this story, we interviewed Clint Knisal, Director of Risk Management and Collections at Multi Service Fuel Card.


Founded with the aim of providing over-the-road trucking companies a more efficient way of managing fuel and other related payments, Multi Service Fuel Card has grown to offer a best-in-class energy management solution for Class 7 & 8 long haul fleets.

Their vision is one of disruption, seeking continuous opportunities to reduce payment friction without compromising the personal touch they have with their customers. At the heart of Multi Service Fuel Card are its dedicated people, thriving in a culture of engagement, urgency, and customer relationships.

The Challenge

In 2022, the commercial trucking industry experienced an unprecedented rise in fraud. From stolen freight to card skimming to first-party fuel fraud, the heavy-duty trucking industry was facing attacks from all sides.

Even though Multi Service Fuel Card already had fraud prevention tools available to their users, the effectiveness of those controls was reliant on each customer setting their parameters, reviewing their statements and reporting suspicious activity. Multi Service Fuel Card was looking for an innovative approach to mitigate fraud proactively on their customer’s behalf.

Behind the scenes, fuel cards collect data that can be utilized to recognize anomalies in spending behavior on an account based upon that account’s historical purchase behavior and / or based on historical trends from similar accounts across the portfolio. Multi Service Fuel Card just didn’t have the advanced algorithms or AI insights to preemptively detect potential threats yet.

The Search for a Solution

By Q4 of 2022, Multi Service Fuel Card was aggressively seeking a solution provider that could help them effectively combat fraud. They rigorously vetted seven vendors in total, including Unit21. Though the specifics of the other vendors remain confidential, ultimately Unit21 was the best fit.

The Outcome with Unit21

After they got up and running with Unit21, they implemented two rules which they are still using today. Those rules are known internally as:

  • “The Speed Rule,” which checks for logistical possibilities between transactions. For instance, a card used in Phoenix and then in Washington DC within a short time would raise alarms.
  • “The Velocity Rule,” which flags cards used multiple times within a specified timeframe as a possible card skimming activity.

Ultimately, Clint noted that Unit21 helped Multi Service Fuel Card shift from a reactive to a proactive stance, detecting fraud long before customers could report it. This not only minimized fraudulent transactions but also reduced potential losses.

“We're getting in front of the fraud and minimizing the fraudulent transactions, which in turn is reducing the potential fraud loss to the customer as well as for Multi Service Fuel Card.”

The efficiency in responding to suspicious activities increased exponentially. What used to take a week was reduced to hours or, at most, a day, with continuous monitoring.

“Unit21 has increased our efficiency because if there are any transactions that have been flagged overnight, we're looking at those first thing in the morning. So we've literally cut our window down from a minimum of a week down to a day.”

An added, less expected consequence of implementing proactive fraud detection measures was a boost to employee morale. The team was not only empowered with tools to combat fraud more effectively but was also recognized by many customers for their proactive approach.

“Customers are appreciative that we're being proactive about preventing potential fraud on their cards. Also, the team is excited to be able to analyze and catch instances of suspicious activity before the customer does.”


Multi Service Fuel Card tracked KPIs like customer-reported fraud vs. Unit21-identified fraud and saw a decline in customer reports, proving the effectiveness of the solution.

Since implementing Unit21, Multi Service Fuel Card has witnessed a significant drop in fraudulent activities:

  • Decrease in Customer-Reported Fraud: There has been an approximately 40% reduction in the monthly average of customer claims related to fraud.
  • Fraud Prevention: In terms of monetary value, an estimated $100K has been prevented from being lost to fraud in just the first three months post-implementation.

Concluding Thoughts

Multi Service Fuel Card's collaboration with Unit21 has proven to be a game-changer. Not only have they seen tangible improvements in fraud metrics, but the solution also aligns seamlessly with their vision of being a disruptive market leader that prioritizes customer relationships.

As they continue their journey in the payments sector, Multi Service Fuel Card is poised to benefit from even greater innovations down the line, and we are proud to be a resource in fraud prevention as they evolve.

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