Telephone Fraud: Phreaking Protection

Phreaking is a technique where hackers use security flaws to access phone networks and make calls. They are unexpected and high value, and combatting them takes a two-pronged approach:

Prevention: as part of telephone system installation, it is essential to update passwords from their default and make them unique to each person. If we are setting up your system for you, or actively manage your existing system, this will be done as standard. However, even with the best prevention, hackers can still get through, which is where our protection measures come in.

Protection: all of our contracted telephone line clients have automatic threshold limits placed on their account, which prevents calls to unnecessary numbers e.g. international numbers if you don’t need them, and immediately switches off your network in the event of high call volumes or high value call patterns. We then contact you to check if the calls are being made by you, and if they aren’t, we cleanse the system, secure any breaches and reinstate your network – all without costly bills.

Traditionally, phreaking incidents increase at weekends and during holiday periods such as Christmas, Easter or over Bank Holidays, when criminals can work unnoticed. The average cost per attack in the UK is currently £10,000 - £16,000 and our thresholds which take immediate action can limit this cost to £100 or less.

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