[VoiceOps] Audio cut-through and toll fraud - was "Letting a phone ring forever"

Carlos Alcantar carlos at race.com
Thu Jul 28 19:00:56 EDT 2011

I think I might have brought up an old thread that American Idol does the
same thing they do not pick up the call they just play there IVR.  We had
an issue a while back with metaswitch that they where not passing dtmf on
calls that the ss7 had not signaled that it had picked up.

Carlos Alcantar
Race Communications / Race Team Member
101 Haskins Way, So. San Francisco, CA. 94080
Phone: +1 415 376 3314  Fax:  +1 650 246 8901 / carlos *at* race.com /
www.race.com <http://www.race.com/>

On 7/27/11 1:26 PM, "Darren Schreiber" <d at d-man.org> wrote:

>US Airways does this, too.
>I agree with everything you've said, including the 800-pound gorilla
>comment. As such, we've been using US Airways and AT&T's Business number
>(800-222-3000) as test numbers when doing interop because of this very
>- Darren Schreiber
>On 7/27/11 1:05 PM, "Jay Hennigan" <jay at west.net> wrote:
>>On 7/27/11 6:28 AM, Stephen Sprunk wrote:
>>> I've had numerous customers ask for longer ringback timeouts on the
>>> calling side; it turns out that the above is a /very/ common practice
>>> for toll-free numbers.  The menus and hold music are all "ringback"
>>> messages, and the call isn't actually "answered" until a human agent
>>> gets on the line.  As many of us are unfortunately aware from our own
>>> experience calling customer (dis)service lines, that can easily exceed
>>> five minutes.
>>The menus?  Really?
>>I have had issues with this and as far as I can tell, the menus should
>>not be considered ringing.
>>We have had reports of DTMF failures navigating the IVR of toll-free
>>numbers from time to time.  American Airlines is one specific example.
>>What we have found is that there really isn't a DTMF issue, but that the
>>forward audio path is being disabled until answer somewhere enroute.
>>This is to me the correct behavior and was implemented at least a decade
>>ago as a fraud prevention measure to prevent an endpoint from simply not
>>providing answer supervision and conversing.
>>From what I recall, the forward audio path is *supposed* to be blocked
>>until the call is answered.  Reverse audio is enabled for ringback
>>tones, intercept recordings, and the like.
>>For a toll-free end user to deliberately not provide answer supervision
>>(and thus start billing) and expect to process DTMF into a menu or for
>>that matter just carry on a conversation seems fraudulent.
>>Of course American Airlines and the like is kind of an 800-pound gorilla
>>and trying to get them or their carrier to alter this behavior of a free
>>ride navigating the menus would be an uphill battle.
>>So I could theoretically have a toll-free number that would have a menu,
>>"Press 1 to hear an audiobook recording of 'War and Peace'; press 2 to
>>hear the 1812 overture..." and run it for free?  Doesn't seem kosher.
>>Jay Hennigan - CCIE #7880 - Network Engineering - jay at impulse.net
>>Impulse Internet Service  -  http://www.impulse.net/
>>Your local telephone and internet company - 805 884-6323 - WB6RDV
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