PBX Fraud

Hang up on the hackers

Summer 2017 PBX FRAud Hang up on the hackers Follow some simply steps to prevent your companys phone system from being breached by criminals fraudsters are increasingly targeting businesses in the early hours of the morning, or over a weekend or public holiday when the firms are closed, but their telephone systems are not! there has been a significant rise in reports of private branch exchange (PBX)/dial-through fraud, where hackers breach phone systems and use them to make a high volume of calls. once the criminals gain access to a companys network, they can exploit in-built services such as voicemail, call forwarding and call diversion to directcalls to a number of their choosing, often premium-rate or international. theywill either receive a share of the revenue generated by thecalls or be paid in advance for their hacking services; either way, losses tothe business can be high. PBX connects internal telephones, as well as linking them to the public switched telephone network (Pstn), Voice over internet Protocol (VoiP) providers, and session initiation Protocol (siP) trunks. it will also often allow access to voice-messaging systems. The good news is that some simple steps can help protect your system and reduce the riskof you becoming a victim the good news is that some simple steps can help protect your system and reduce the risk of you becoming a victim. n if you have your voicemail on a default Pin/password, change it immediately n use strong Pin/passwords for your voicemail system and change them regularly further information how to spot and then avoid getting caught out by scams targeting businesses click here a comprehensive guide from the metropolitanpolice Keep up to date with all the latest news andscams n disable access to your voicemail system from outside lines. this is usually used to give remote workers access, but if this is not business critical disable it, or ensure access is restricted to essential users and that they update their Pin/passwords regularly n if you do not need to call international/premium-rate numbers, ask your telecoms provider to put a restriction on your phone line n Consider asking your network provider not to permit outbound calls at certain times for example, when your business is closed n ask your telecoms provider to alert you immediately if there is unusual call activity on your phone lines n ensure you review available call-logging and call-reporting options regularly, and monitor them for increased or suspect traffic n secure your exchange and communications system, use a strong PBX firewall and if you dont need the function close it down n ensure that the person responsible for the pBX understands the threats, and ask them to correct any identified security defects n Consider consulting an it telecoms professional, to ensure the settings for your pBX system are secure and set up properly Credit: Bob Charnley Images: iStock.com / jcarillet Source: National Fraud Intelligence Bureaux for further information, please contact your local trading Standards Service