TransUnion, a Chicago-based credit-reporting firm, has acquired Trustev, an Ireland-based e-commerce ID and fraud protection startup, in a $44 million deal - including $21 million initially and $23 million more contingent on meeting certain targets.

The deal officially closed this week and the technology. The acquisition allows TransUnion to boost its role helping firms at the back end with monitoring and approving purchases to reduce the risk of online fraud. 

Trustev, which began operations in 2013, already was integrated into TransUnion’s wider fraud management solutions business. Since then, customers have seen a 60% reduction in fraud, according to the companies. Current customers include large companies in verticals like financial services, government, healthcare and insurance.

Trustev  looks at transactions and the people making them in real time, using big data analytics to make sure that sales are being made by legit entities.

"As fraud grows in volume and sophistication, TransUnion continues to invest in building our global capabilities to help companies manage their risk," said Jim Peck, TransUnion’s president and CEO. "Holistic information is a powerful tool to help our customers approve good transactions and prevent fraud, and Trustev’s innovative capabilities are at the forefront of technology in this increasingly critical field.”

Trustev had disclosed just under $8 million in investments before the deal, with backers including Mangrove, Greycroft and others.

Pat Phelan, co-founder and CEO of Trustev, added, "Together, TransUnion and Trustev create a very powerful combination of software intelligence and rich data to stop online fraud. We will be able to help companies across many industries better spot bad actors online, and block their efforts, while letting good customers through. With TransUnion’s large global reach and Trustev’s online technology, this is a very positive move for all of our customers."

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