[VoiceOps] Fraud

Jay Hennigan jay at west.net
Mon Feb 24 16:26:56 EST 2014

On 2/24/14 10:48 AM, My List Account wrote:
> Maybe I am missing something here but why does the carrier that delivers
> the fraudulent traffic to the Telco that’s in on the fraud pay the Telco
> that’s in on the fraud for the calls that are delivered to their
> network?   Seems pretty simple, if you cut off their revenue stream they
> won’t have a reason to continue.   

The telco that terminates the high rate calls is making money on them,
the carrier that is next-in-line makes money, and there are sufficient
non-fraudulent calls to that carrier that refusing to complete the calls
isn't possible without impacting legitimate service.

This is similar to the 900/976 arrangement in the US a few years back.

Assume that the fraudulent "information service" gets paid the
equivalent of 50 US cents per minute.  The national telco which may or
may not be in on the deal gets another 50 cents.  Big international rate
deck for million-minute delivery might be $1.25 and you might pay $1.50
and bill your customers $2.00.

Your customer's PBX gets owned, and racks up 5000 minutes for a bill of
$10K.  Everyone upstream wants their bite of the apple, none of them is
responsible for making the calls, or at least can't be proven to be.

If you're a really nice guy and knock the bill down to the $7500 that it
costs you, your customer still thinks you're the bad guy.

> I guess we all know there is no incentive for them to stop this practice
> because it’s a big cash cow for everyone except for the poor end user
> who is left holding the bag.

Precisely, but it's the end user who left the barn door open.  Nobody in
the revenue stream forced your customer to enable offsite international
forwarding and set the DTMF voice portal password to 1234.

> Our default dial plan won’t let you dial these destinations so we don’t
> have a real issue with this abusive traffic.   Most of our customers who
> use international go with one of our filtered dial plans that let them
> dial most of the world except for known fraudulent and high toll rate
> destinations.

And/or require verified auth codes and disable offsite forwarding, rate
limit, put in monitoring and alerting/shutdown, and spend a lot of time,
effort, and money protecting your customers from themselves.

But, just as ISP customers want the whole Internet without filtering,
most voice customers don't want "The Phone Company" telling them where
they're allowed to call.  Until they get the bill.  Then they care.

And if you do put in an alerting system, there's this dilemma:
"My pager just went of at 4:00 AM Sunday morning - do I call the CEO of
my biggest customer and ask if they are deliberately placing 50
simultaneous calls to Somalia, shut the trunk down, or just send them
the bill and hope they pay it?"

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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