Unauthorized long distance usage is the use of your phone lines, equipment, or services to make long distance calls that are charged to you without your consent or knowledge. The activity is similar to computer hacking. Unless your telephone equipment or system is properly secured, an unauthorized person, including a thief, can gain access to your equipment/system to make it appear as though long distance calls originate from your company. Although unauthorized charges occur largely in the Caribbean and other international countries, calls can be routed anywhere around the globe without notice and with devastating financial results. Recent estimates suggest that unauthorized long distance costs companies approximately $12 billion dollars a year.
A company is responsible for securing its own telephone system and equipment from a security breach. This means the company, not the service provider, is also responsible for any improper/unauthorized charges that result from its system being hacked. And hackers can rack up charges quickly, especially by using auto-dialers on your system, with a single company seeing charges in excess of $70,000 in just a few days.
|My company uses an auto-attendant to answer in-bound calls||Hackers access auto-attendants by dialing a toll-free number and pressing "0" or another number until they reach a voicemail box inside the system.|
|My company uses voicemail where the end user is responsible for the password||Systems can be breached by reaching a voicemail box with an easy or standard password, or voicemail boxes where passwords have not been reset from past users.|
|Use of remote access or VPN||There may be a port open in the firewall which can be breached to gain access to an IP voice system.|
|My company monitors our own phone system||Technology is always changing. Firewalls and other equipment may not be 100% secure.|
|My company uses long distance which supports international and Caribbean calling.||
Cincinnati Bell is helping to create awareness of this global issue. Not only can we help you learn best practices with respect to securing your communications system and preventing unauthorized long distance usage, but our Limited Liability Protection Plans can give you the peace of mind by limiting the financial burden you face in the event of unauthorized or illegal usage.
Cincinnati Bell offers all long distance customers its complimentary Standard package that covers unauthorized charges exceeding $25,000 per covered incident and provides priority notification of any suspected unauthorized outbound calls we identify. You can further limit your liability for such charges by subscribing to one of our Limited Liability Protection Plans.