Free Simbox Map Offered by LATRO

Specialist vendors LATRO have announced they will offer telcos and regulators a free animated map of the location of simboxes they have disconnected. The screenshot above shows how their Versamapper tool visualized CDR data from an actual LATRO project for the Bangladeshi regulator. As you can see, the heatmap identifies the hotspots where fraudsters place their equipment.

I spoke to LATRO CTO and COO Don Reinhart about Versamapper and he confided that he was surprised by the interest shown by telcos when they see the Versamapper visualizations. Sometimes the simplest techniques can be the most compelling. In this instance, watching an animated map of the location of simboxes really helps telcos and regulators to understand where they should focus limited resources.

Don explained that simbox fraudsters tend to base their operations in cities where they have easy access to the resources they need. Concentrating fraud detection and law enforcement activity on the relevant parts of town hence leads to significant cost efficiencies.

The free trial of Versamapper is being offered to telcos and regulators for a limited period. Those interested should register here. Participants in the trial will need to transfer their CDR data to LATRO in the relevant format, and LATRO will then respond by processing the data using Versamapper to produce maps of the simbox locations.

An increasing number of RAFM vendors are experimenting with giving free trials of their offerings. This is a good sign, as it proves their technology really works. Having watched the results of LATRO’s Bangladesh project I expect other regulators will want to follow their lead. Experienced telco fraud managers may feel they already know where fraudsters base themselves, but they should not underestimate the power of presenting intuitive visualizations like these to executives and board members.

Don will be a keynote speaker at the RAG Bahrain conference in January. Telcos and regulators are also welcome to attend for free, and so talk to Don and other experts about new ways to manage risk.

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.