PINDROP BLOG

Phone Fraud | Social Engineering

How the “Distorted Please” is Taking Advantage of Your Staff

You run a tight ship in your call centre. Your agents are highly trained to provide excellent customer service and resolve calls quickly.

But this commitment to making customers happy comes at a cost. It makes you a target for fraud. Attackers know that your employees want to deliver a great customer experience – and they exploit it ruthlessly.

Fraudsters are well known for their use of social engineering to manipulate agents into giving away confidential information. They often create personas or contrive situations on calls that they know will persuade agents to divulge personal information or make changes to account details.

To learn more about the tactics that fraudsters use, Pindrop® Labs reviewed more than half a billion calls for fraudulent activity. We identified a number of different but prolific fraudsters, each with their own methods for exploiting the good nature of customer service agents.

Here’s just one of the characters taking your customer service agents for a ride…

Introducing the “Distorted Please”

This fraudster uses voice distortion software to manipulate his natural sound by lowering or increasing the pitch. This gives him options, such as using a high-pitched voice to access accounts held by women.

Even with his voice disguised, this fraudster’s speech has identifiable characteristics – repeated use of the word “please” being his most obvious giveaway.

But despite this, and the audibly poor attempt at vocal deception, the Distorted Please fraudster has successfully transferred money out of a large number of accounts.

Beating Fraud Without Sacrificing the Customer Experience

The problem is, the better your customer service agents, the more susceptible they are to tactics such as those leveraged by the Distorted Please.

Fraudsters are often ingenious in the ways that they gain access to crucial information. Our 2017 UK Call Centre Fraud Report outlines the most prolific among them, and their methods. Knowing your enemy is the first step to identifying the weaknesses in your call centre.

However, placing the burden of fraud detection entirely on call centre agents is not a sustainable solution. Having employees conduct exhaustive security checks on the phone wouldn’t just drastically increase call handle times, but also damage the customer experience.

Organisations need to invest in solutions that let agents do what they do best without having to worry about detecting fraud.

Read the 2017 UK Call Centre Fraud Report to learn about the other types of fraudsters targeting businesses, and how technology can help you fight them.

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