Caller ID Spoofing:
Caller ID Spoofing and Phone Phishing are becoming more prevalent every day. Fraudulent telemarketers and scammers are even using our own Georgia Tech telephone numbers to reach our campus constituents. Please read the article below, and contact OIT Telecommunications at 404-894-7173, Option 3 if you have any questions or need additional information.
OIT Telecommunications is providing a reprint of the article below on CALLER ID SPOOFING AND PHONE PHISHING because we see no need to recreate it. They did a good job.
A Reprint of: TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE....
A Column on Consumer Issues by North Dakota Attorney General's Office, Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem’s Consumer Protection and Antitrust Division
March 5, 2008
CALLER ID SPOOFING/PHONE PHISHING
Have you ever had a telephone call when you checked the Caller ID and decided it was call you wanted to take, only to find out when you answered the call, it was not the caller you anticipated! If this has happened to you, you have been the victim of “Caller ID spoofing.”
According to Wikipedia, “Caller ID spoofing is the practice of causing the telephone network to display a number on the recipient’s Caller ID display which is not that of the actual originating station...” And while there may be legitimate uses for Caller ID spoofing such as for law enforcement purposes, insurance companies, human service agencies, etc., the fraudulent uses of this practice are increasing.
Gaining access to Caller ID spoofing capabilities is as easy as logging onto one of several well known websites, creating an account, providing a credit card number for fees associated with the call (for as little as $10 per 60 minutes), entering your pin number, and entering any number you wish to spoof. You can even disguise your voice if you wish, choosing either a male or female voice!
Even more alarming, North Dakota numbers are currently being used in Caller ID spoofing. Late last year the Consumer Protection Division received telephone calls from out-of-state consumers complaining about telemarketing calls they were receiving from a 701 area code number. As it turns out, the number was spoofed and was actually the home phone number of a Bismarck resident who knew nothing about the calls.
While there are legitimate uses for Caller ID spoofing, here are some uses that are not considered legitimate:
• Voicemail Hacking – Caller ID spoofing can, in some cases, be used to access voicemail boxes with some providers. Many phone providers have taken steps to prevent this from happening on their systems.
• Wire Fraud – scammers have figured out that businesses providing wire transfer services rely on Caller ID to verify that the caller is calling from their home phone numbers. The scammers will call to initiate a wire transfer with the Caller ID of the person they are pretending to be, and will use that person’s credit card or bank account to transfer funds to another account - most often in another country.
• Phone Phishing – phishing scammers are using Caller ID spoofing to gain personal information from victims over the telephone by appearing to be from the victim’s bank or credit card company, etc. Phone phishing is fraud and is illegal.
• Threats – Caller ID spoofing has been used to phone in bomb threats, kidnapping and other threats to law enforcement. Law enforcement takes threats seriously and investigations cost thousands of dollars in resources until the threat is proven to be a hoax.
• Prank Calls – Caller ID spoofing is often used in making prank calls to friends and family. While these calls are often harmless, they can cause alarm to the recipient of the call.
While there is currently no way to block your phone from Caller ID spoofing, here are some common tips to remember when you receive a telephone call:
· Don’t trust anyone. Anyone you do business with already has the information they need on you. They will not call and ask you your social security number or to verify your account number.
· If you receive a call from your bank, credit card company etc., write down the number on the caller ID, hang up and redial their number.
· Don’t assume it is who you think it is, even if the Caller ID indicates it is a relative, your children’s school or the local police department. You may wish to exercise some caution. For instance, you could hang up and call the number back.
In June 2007, The Truth in Caller ID Act of 2007 was passed in the House of Representatives, passed in a Senate committee, and is awaiting hearings in the Senate. This Act is set out to strictly prohibit fraud and harassment through Caller ID spoofing. It does not prohibit companies from providing commercial Caller ID spoofing services and places the responsibility on the individual using Caller ID spoofing to use spoofing within the law. There currently is a law making it illegal for telemarketers to spoof Caller ID and this carries a $10,000 per violation fee…
If you have a Caller ID Spoofing/Phone Phishing issue on a Georgia Institute of Technology campus telephone, please call OIT Telecommunications at 404-894-7173, Option 3.
The Georgia Governor’s Office of Consumer Affairs should be contacted regarding issues with your home and personal cellular telephones.
Governor's Office of Consumer Affairs2 Martin Luther King Jr., Drive SE, Suite 356Atlanta, Georgia 30334-4600 Phone: 404-651-8600 or800-869-1123 (toll-free in Georgia, outside of the metro Atlanta calling area) Fax: 404-651-9018 The office is open 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday.www.georgia.gov