Fraud is an ugly word. It is a problem that plagues industries across the world, from stolen credit cards to identity theft to stolen email passwords, and as our society becomes more and more dependent on technology, there are greater opportunities for us to fall victim to fraud. And, unfortunately, VoIP technology is not immune to this danger. In fact, in the past two years, VoIP fraud is on the rise. Luckily, though, there are ways to prevent VoIP fraud.
In a recent blog post, Valerie Bradford from TransNexus, a provider of least cost routing, number portability, profitability analysis, and fraud detection solutions, discussed this very topic. Bradford cited statistics collected by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission indicating that there were over 83,000 VoIP fraud complaints in 2011, which is quadruple the number of complaints filed in 2009.
There are several key factors that contribute to the rise of VoIP fraud. Since international communications standards and regulations are lax, hackers can easily prey on these devices, especially in third-world countries where these criminals can make deals with corrupt phone companies. Plus, scammers need very little specialized equipment to set up their little rackets and many scammers have realized that VoIP security and oversight are lacking in most firms.
The statistics surrounding VoIP fraud are staggering. One Los Angeles software company was victimized by hackers who made 150 calls per minute! According to Jim Dalton, CEO of TransNexus (News - Alert), one instance of VoIP fraud could cost a provider anywhere from $5,000 to $50,000. And a study by one fraud management company estimated that some telcos are losing upwards of $150 million a year due to VoIP fraud.
Fortunately, though, there are some solutions to address VoIP fraud. For example, TransNexus has released a fraud detection module in its NexOSS product. The module detects spikes in call traffic, automatically blacklisting suspicious routes, suspending them from the routing table. The company’s SDReporter product has been upgraded with fraud detection features designed to catch potential fraud events in real-time and send automatic alerts. This is one way to stop these scammers cold and prevent them from picking your pockets with VoIP fraud.
Edited by Carrie Schmelkin