In the most recent issue of Comms Dealer – one of the industry’s leading publications – an entire double-page spread was dedicated to the topic of telecoms fraud.
In recent years, we have regularly informed our customers about the threat of dial-through fraud and phone hackers via emails, blogs, infographics and account management calls. It is worrying how often businesses are caught out despite all the warnings, so it is heartening to see the industry devote so many column inches to the subject.
It may sound morbid, but phone hacking is a bit like life insurance. You never think it’s going to happen to you and when it does, it’s too late to put protective measures in place.
Even when we have presented real examples to our customers of businesses that have lost thousands of pounds at the hands of phone hackers, they still refuse to believe it will happen to them.
The Comms Dealer panel of experts all agreed that awareness is poor.
The key here is that it is a crime. If criminals – and we are talking about highly organised criminal gangs – find an easy way to make money; they are not going to stop anytime soon, especially as it is so difficult to bring the perpetrators to justice.
Another of the experts described telecoms fraud as a “sleeping assassin”. But the reality is that it’s not the assassin that’s asleep –it’s their victims! The phone hackers’ handiwork often occurs overnight or during weekends when businesses are closed. The dormant aspect of this crime is that you may be blissfully unaware of dial-through fraud but when it happens to you, you will receive a nasty wake-up call...and a nasty bill.
It’s not up to the supplier to foot the bill. It is entirely up to the business to find the funds for these criminals’ ill-gotten gains. We have found a way to protect our customers by offering them protection that limits their liability to hundreds rather than thousands of pounds but, like life insurance, many still choose not to take us up on our Fraud Management Service as they do not think it will ever happen to them.
So back to the experts to sum up: “The threat is very real – Britain in the third most targeted country with an average cost of £10k per victim” and “If a fraudster finds a hole in your defences, it will cost thousands.”
The warnings are loud and clear. There is no need to get caught out.