How to Protect Your Phone System from Being Hacked
When you hear the word hacking, you likely think of having your computer hacked or some other type of software hacked. Well, hacking does not just apply to a computer or software-backed system. It can also occur with your phone system. Phone lines, both in commercial and residential settings, are susceptible to being hacked. This might come as a surprise to most, but phone hacking is just another thing we must be worried about in today’s technology-led world.
What is Toll Fraud?
The most common crime that occurs when a phone system is hacked is that of toll fraud. Toll fraud is when the hackers use your phone number to make toll calls across the world. These calls typically rack up thousands of dollars in charges before you even realize your phone system has been hacked. Over the span of a few days, a fraudulent act such as this can rack up $20,000 or more in toll charges. What makes the matter worse for many companies is that the phone providers tend to hold the companies liable for the charges.
The Communications Fraud Control Association reports that toll fraud costs companies an estimated $4.73 billion each year. The hackers break into your phone system by using an automated attendant or voicemail system. After logging into the system, the hackers dial 900 numbers, which charge users more than $1 per minute for calls. The hackers then receive some of those charges to your company. That is the main part of the entire scheme.
Change Passwords Frequently
It might not be the most ideal situation, but you should change the passwords to your voicemail and automated attendant systems frequently. This will give phone hackers a much more difficult time trying to break into your system.
Restrict the access to your phone features during off-business hours. Figure out which phones need to make toll calls out of the country during off-business hours. Once you put this list together, you can then restrict all other phones in the office from this access.
Monitor the calling patterns on your phone system. Look at your call logs often to monitor calls to 800 and 900 numbers. This will help you find invalid calls or calls to chat lines or invalid 900 numbers. By monitoring your call logs, you can find discrepancies before they become a big problem.
Perform System Checks Regularly
Perform system checks regularly for the health of the phone system in your office. Monitor all the operations of the system and analyze them. Find out if your provider sees any changes in the system that might affect how the system operates.
If all else fails, upgrade your phone system. The newest phone systems have some of the highest security features available, while older phone systems have a higher chance of being hacked.
Has your phone system been hacked? Are you dealing with fraudulent charges? Contact Eastern American Technologies to find out how you can better protect your company’s phone system. The office can be reached at (718) 937-3600.
*Content updated: December 27, 2017