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Telecom Industry News - November 2016

By: Jim Schakenbach

With all the talk of hacking, security, and fraud in the news this month, it seems fitting to start off with a review of some of the more notable news surrounding security issues and privacy.

As robocalling quickly metastasized across the country this year, service providers found themselves inundated with consumer complaints. YouMail took a two-step approach to solving the problem, starting with a new application program interface (API) that enables telecom carriers, private branch exchange (PBX) providers, and third-party developers to programmatically determine whether a given phone number is an undesirable robocaller. It followed up with a consumer update to the free YouMail Intelligent Call Management application for Android and iPhone smartphones that automatically stops most annoying spam robocallers. U.S. phones were hit by a record 2.6 billion robocalls in both August and September.

BICS, a global wholesale carrier for voice, mobile data and capacity services, this month announced the launch of its Voice Roaming Firewall solution, which automatically blocks incidents of voice fraud in roaming for its customers. Roaming has emerged as the biggest criminal exploitation within the industry, contributing significantly to the total 38.1 billion USD worth of fraud losses estimated by the Communications Fraud Control Association (CFCA). 


Telecommunications fraud is not restricted to just the U.S. Swiss mobile inter-carrier and M2M-IoT services provider Starhome Mach this month announced a new real-time international revenue share fraud prevention solution to help stem 43 thousand dollars per hour in mobile operator losses. Starhome Mach reports that mobile operators continue to suffer significant fraud losses due to an ever-increasing number of International Revenue Share Fraud (IRSF) cases.

AT&T released new research this month in its latest AT&T Cybersecurity Insights report, "The CEO's Guide to Navigating the Threat Landscape," which shows that most cyber attacks impacting today's businesses are "known" or common threats. The mainstreaming of cyber-attack methods has made it possible for anyone to launch an attack on an organization. While the hype and uncertainty surrounding new cyber-security threats or vulnerabilities paint a picture that cyber-attacks are seemingly unstoppable, more than 90% of the attacks seen in the past year were "known." Having the right security measures may have helped prevent those attacks. 

In other AT&T news, the carrier announced the launch of its new high-speed, high-security network connectivity solution aimed at helping cloud services providers securely connect their business customers. Solution providers in the AT&T Partner Exchange can now help their business customers confidently move to the cloud using the new AT&T NetBond solution -- a high-speed, highly-secure network connection to a wide range of leading cloud service providers.



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