Every day, hundreds of thousands of people call U.S. government and public sector agencies. While most private sector call centers deal with inquiries around shipping delays or billing statements, calls to a government agency tend to be centered around more important matters – help with tax returns, filing for needed benefits, emergency services, etc. The agent on the other end of the phone line may seem like the caller’s only lifeline; so having an agent who instills confidence and empathy is of primary importance.
However, those call center agents, who are focused on doing their best to help citizens, have another problem to deal with. Hidden among those legitimate callers are a group of callers with other motives: reconnaissance, identity theft, and more. In fact, new research in the private sector indicates that about 1 in every 2,200 calls to a call center is a skilled fraudster with experience in social engineering and data mining, and with special technology designed to abet an attack.