Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Customer Contact Centers Offer Criminals Multiple Opportunities For Identity Theft, Study Shows

Date:
March 13, 2009
Source:
Inderscience
Summary:
A survey of 45 customer contact centers in Glasgow, Scotland, has revealed that they offer criminals multiple opportunities for identity theft. Details show that agents at such centers commonly receive suspicious phone calls. Others reported having been offered money in exchange for private customer information.

A survey of 45 customer contact centres in Glasgow, Scotland, has revealed that they offer criminals multiple opportunities for identity theft. Details published in a forthcoming issue of the International Journal of Electronic Security and Digital Forensics, show that agents at such centres commonly receive suspicious phone calls. Others reported having been offered money in exchange for private customer information.

Related Articles


Contact centres are the multimedia equivalent of the standard telephone call centre, providing customer care and acting as an information conduit for phone calls, email and fax, website feedback, and live online support.

Iain Moir and George Weir, of the University of Strathclyde, have identified specific practices within contact centres that may contribute to the likelihood of identity theft.

"The questionnaire indicated that 73% of the surveyed workers had dealt with a suspicious call," the researchers explain, "In all but one case, this was indicated to management. In finance, 100% reported that they had dealt with a suspicious phone call. This supports the view that the financial services sector bears the brunt of fraud attacks. In telecom and outsource, 60 and 70% of workers felt that they had dealt with suspicious phone calls, respectively."

Identity theft has become an increasingly prevalent form of fraud and represents a growing worry for individuals and businesses. Bribery of call and contact centre operatives and social engineering are reported as on the increase. However, Moir and Weir also point out that fraudsters may themselves gain employment in contact centres in order to gain access to personal information directly.

They point out that the tabloid preoccupation of "bin raiding" as a strategy for gaining information with which to carry out an identity theft and subsequent fraud is the least likely mechanism. Indeed, some offenders report that this simply doesn't happen, which is perhaps bad news for companies selling paper shredders. Instead, manipulation of employees at contact centres or direct theft of information is a more common source.

"Unfortunately, many contact centre agents are unaware of the risks and are untrained in how to deal with them," Moir and Weir explain, "This can result in severe financial loss to the customer along with the associated psychological trauma from having their identity stolen."

Since the survey was carried out, the UK's Call Centre Association, which aims to promote standards of practice in customer call centres, has now added a section to its "Global Standard" on the issue of fraud prevention. The researchers also point out that the Scottish Business Crime Centre has published a Good Practice Guide on fraud prevention in contact centres.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Inderscience. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Inderscience. "Customer Contact Centers Offer Criminals Multiple Opportunities For Identity Theft, Study Shows." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 March 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090313080302.htm>.
Inderscience. (2009, March 13). Customer Contact Centers Offer Criminals Multiple Opportunities For Identity Theft, Study Shows. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 26, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090313080302.htm
Inderscience. "Customer Contact Centers Offer Criminals Multiple Opportunities For Identity Theft, Study Shows." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090313080302.htm (accessed November 26, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Science & Society News

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Who Will Failed Nuclear Talks Hurt Most?

Who Will Failed Nuclear Talks Hurt Most?

Reuters - Business Video Online (Nov. 25, 2014) With no immediate prospect of sanctions relief for Iran, and no solid progress in negotiations with the West over the country's nuclear programme, Ciara Lee asks why talks have still not produced results and what a resolution would mean for both parties. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
FCC Forces T-Mobile To Alert Customers Of Data Throttling

FCC Forces T-Mobile To Alert Customers Of Data Throttling

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) T-Mobile and the FCC have reached an agreement requiring the company to alert customers when it throttles their data speeds. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Symantec Uncovers Sophisticated Spying Malware Regin

Symantec Uncovers Sophisticated Spying Malware Regin

Newsy (Nov. 24, 2014) A Symantec white paper reveals details about Regin, a spying malware of unusual complexity which is believed to be state-sponsored. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Science & Society

Business & Industry

Education & Learning

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins