In general, fraud isn’t something that we like to think about – but as evidence suggests that the instances of VoIP fraud have begun to rise, it’s more important than ever to make sure that you’re informed, and prepared to avoid the risks.
Fraudulent activities in VoIP are generally linked to a trend in which hackers access paid communication services using unauthorised methods. The access means that the service use is charged to someone, either an end-user or service provider, without their knowledge.
While it might be difficult to prevent VoIP fraud from happening altogether, the right education could help you to reduce your chances of becoming a victim. After all, there’s more to know about fraud than the fact that it could cost your business millions of pounds. For many, education will be the best form of defence against this new business threat.
1. VoIP Fraud is Becoming More Common
The first thing to understand is that instances of VoIP fraud have been on the rise, both on a domestic and international level. Research indicates that fraud instances have increased by 40% over the last several years in some countries, and the problem is only expected to become more severe as hackers identify new solutions for getting their hands on crucial data – from traffic pumping to password scanning.
2. Off-Peak Caution is Crucial
While it’s important to recognise that VoIP fraud can happen at any time, to anyone, it’s also worth noting that hackers are more likely to attempt exploits when they believe no-one is watching. Examining your system during off-peak hours like holidays, weekends, and the early hours of the morning could help you to catch potential thieves in their tracks.
3. Keep Your System Updated
As with various forms of internet fraud, one of the best ways you can protect yourself is to ensure that your current software is up to date. Hackers often attempt to use known exploits on certain devices, which means that making sure your PBX and phone systems are regularly updated could help you to patch various vulnerabilities.
4. Having an Insecure Network Could be Devastating
For most people, this information will go without saying, but only 38% of people surveyed believe that they are prepared in the event of a cyber-attack. In simple terms, if a hacker manages to break into your phone or PBX, they’ll have everything they need to begin placing high numbers of outbound calls – often to expensive destinations. By the time that you capture your hacker, you could find that you have an exceptionally high bill to pay. Ensuring that your network is protected is a great way to protect yourself, and your business.
5. Alert/Monitoring Systems are Essential
For businesses that want to minimise the damage that can come as a result of VoIP fraud, the best solution is to have a monitoring or alert system in place that keeps you informed when something untoward is happening on your system. A real-time alert system should inform you of any abnormal or suspicious traffic so that you can instantly take action.
6. Don’t Waste Time
The final thing to know about VoIP fraud, is that every second counts. Many people who become a victim of this crime wait until they have already been targeted to start taking the correct precautions. However, making sure that you have a solid detection system in place and locking down your network could save you from disaster.
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How many frauds have you seen recently and what caused them? Malicious? User Error? (comment below)