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February 26 – The Week in Phone Fraud

TWIPF2 This week in phone fraud, white hat social engineering and believable tech support scams.

On Wednesday, reporter Kevin Roose published a story of his experience after asking to be hacked. The most surprising attack was also the most simple. The attacker simply called Roose’s cell phone company, impersonating his wife, and quickly gained access to the account, changing the password and adding a new phone line.

On Friday, Brian Krebs exposed an apparent data breach at Dell. Fraudsters have obtained Dell customer support and purchase histories as well as contact information and are using the information as tools in consumer phone scams. The cases illustrate the way fraudsters work across phone and online channels.


CBC: Canada Revenue Agency scam calls and emails have many red flags – When the phone call begins, the man identifies himself as an investigative officer with Revenue Canada and he even gives his supposed identification number. The problem is the man doesn’t work for Revenue Canada.

The New York Times: A Robot That Has Fun at Telemarketers’ Expense – While the simple robot does not possess anything near artificial intelligence, it does understand speech patterns and inflections, so it can monitor what the telemarketer is saying, and then do its best to try to keep the person on the end of the line engaged.

Bankless Times: Pindrop touts new voice-fraud detection technology – “Most companies do not have sufficient insights into customer IVR activity, much less the amount of fraud and unnecessary costs hiding there,” Vijay Balasubramaniyan explained. “Alarmingly, our beta test showed that IVR fraud rates are on par with live agent phone fraud.”

Pindrop: Pindrop Launches First IVR Fraud Protection Solution – Pindrop, the pioneer in voice-fraud prevention and authentication, today launched IVR Anti-Fraud, making Pindrop the first and only company to offer comprehensive call center fraud detection to all customer voice channel interactions.

Telegraph: Bank security: annoying AND useless – Fraudsters managed to get past NatWest’s telephone security and make a transfer from our reader’s Isa to another of her accounts. They then convinced their victim that the high balance in the latter account was a mistake and to send the money to the criminals’ bank.

Pindrop Blog: Phone Scam Breakdown: Google Listings Scam – You’re a small business owner running a website through a popular hosting site. Then, from a local number, you get a phone call from a Google specialist claiming they have a front page position for your business with unlimited clicks, 24 hours a day.

Forbes highlights Deep Voice™ Biometric Engine