Do You Want to Know When Your Phone Numbers Are Being Abused?

If I was going to pick a question that would divide fraud managers down the middle, it would be the one in the headline. To be more precise, the full question would be:

Phone numbers belonging to ranges assigned to your business are being spoofed by criminals so they can exploit victims of other communications providers. Do you want to know which of your numbers are being abused like this?

My guess is that half of all fraud managers would simply not care. They will argue that the fraud is being suffered by somebody else’s business, and by somebody else’s customer. As they are not paid to tackle this crime, it is no concern of theirs. They are content to allow the criminal to exploit their phone numbers, reasoning that it is somebody else’s problem, and they are not paid to fix other people’s problems.

The other half would care. They will argue that the abuse of their numbers is a risk to their business too. They do not want genuine inbound calls to be blocked, as that would hurt their customers. Equally importantly, they do not want to lose inbound revenue because calls that should have reached their customers are being routed somewhere else. They want collective action so crooks that deliberately mis-route traffic are put out of business.

The RAG Wangiri Blockchain is making a new offer aimed at the latter group of fraud managers. We have a lot of data about wangiri fraud, which effectively means we have a lot of data about the use of spoofed phone numbers for crime… and also data on crimes where the A-number was not spoofed. Now we have created an automated notification module which will warn you when number ranges belonging to your business are used to defraud customers of other telcos.

To gain access to this functionality you just have to do what 80 other telcos have already done: sign up to become a user of the RAG Wangiri Blockchain and regularly upload data on the wangiri frauds that your business has identified. There is no fee; all we ask is that you provide data that benefits other telcos and their customers in the same way that they have already supplied intelligence of use to you.

RAG’s share-and-share-alike model is simple and has proven popular with all sorts of telcos around the world. We may never engage the 50 percent of fraud managers who prefer to work in isolation, but much can be gained by pooling the intelligence of all the other fraud managers who choose to help each other. If you want to know when your number ranges are being abused then create a user account and apply for access at the web portal for the RAG Wangiri Blockchain, or you can read more and ask questions about the RAG Wangiri Blockchain here.

Eric Priezkalns
Eric Priezkalns
Eric is the Editor of Commsrisk. Look here for more about the history of Commsrisk and the role played by Eric.

Eric is also the Chief Executive of the Risk & Assurance Group (RAG), a global association of professionals working in risk management and business assurance for communications providers.

Previously Eric was Director of Risk Management for Qatar Telecom and he has worked with Cable & Wireless, T‑Mobile, Sky, Worldcom and other telcos. He was lead author of Revenue Assurance: Expert Opinions for Communications Providers, published by CRC Press. He is a qualified chartered accountant, with degrees in information systems, and in mathematics and philosophy.