The Intrado Fraud Prevention and Detection Team

Posted on January 9, 2020

Jaime Zetterstrom heads up a global Fraud Prevention and Detection Team at Intrado

Intrado has a world class Fraud Prevention and Detection Team that supports all of the lines of business, including Flowroute. This team operates 24/7/365, is distributed across the world, and is responsible for fraud management and detection.

The Fraud Detection and Prevention team operates remotely. The team logs into a portal, which is just like a command center, but they’re distributed all over the world instead of in one physical location. This is important because people become experts in the region where they’re living. The more experts that are brought into the mix, the stronger the team becomes overall.

Daily fraud happens all the time, but the team is able to catch and mitigate it before it becomes a financial burden to either the customer or Intrado. Intrado has spent a lot of resources to build the system to its current level. Intrado is working hard behind the scenes to protect customers from fraud. Flowroute is now part of the West Telecom Services (WTS) line of business at Intrado and the team works to protect all Intrado customers and the telecom world in general.

The Fraud Prevention and Detection Team participates in many industry boards, such as the Communications Fraud Control Association (CFCA). The CFCA meets regularly and hosts webinars every two weeks to communicate with everyone in the organization about what’s going on in fraud. An Intrado team member sits on the advisory board of another organization that focuses on toll free. In this case the team member helps the group understand security around toll free. It can be toll free enablement, toll free to texting, anything related to toll free. The Intrado team member guides them from a security standpoint.

Intrado – A leader in the industry

Intrado is absolutely a leader in the fraud detection environment as a whole. The communications industry has a very small group of carriers that are handling approximately 90% of the telco traffic in the world and Intrado is one of them. Intrado participates with these other carriers on a weekly call to discuss trace-backs to try and detect bad actors across the networks. There is also representation from law enforcement on that weekly call. So, if calls are identified that continue to trace back to the same bad actor, law enforcement now has all the information they need to subpoena the bad actor. Across the board, Intrado is playing ball with the big guys in our industry to protect customers and the industry in general.

When a WTS customer suddenly starts to see a spike in traffic from Antigua, for example, the team will get alerted and reach out to a sales engineer at WTS to determine if they may have negotiated new business. If it’s determined that there hasn’t been anything new added in Antigua, then the team will reach out to the customer to verify the usage with them. The customer can verify if this traffic is legitimate traffic. If the customer determines it is not legitimate and that it wasn’t good traffic, then Intrado is either suspending traffic or putting it on hold depending on the customer requirements. All of this checking between groups is happening in seconds.

When there is a violation today with Flowroute customers that is auto-detected by our system, an email goes out to them requesting them to verify whether the traffic is legitimate. Flowroute customers get a link, they click on it, which brings them to their customer portal. They can quickly say, ’Yep, this was all legitimate’. The Fraud team still tracks the yellow flags and will reach out to Flowroute customer support to investigate if it continues to happen.

Flowroute is enabling our customers to have international access. One of the things that we look at is where those calls are being made. Intrado has an automated system for fraud detection that has algorithms along with machine learning, so we know which numbers are on a watch list or which numbers just got hit.

Seasonal Fraud

International fraud happens around the U.S. holidays because fraudsters think the companies in the U.S. aren’t watching at the time. In the United States, we start getting an uptick in fraud schemes around Halloween and it goes until New Year’s. A lot of people are doing more online shopping during this time frame, or they’re going to websites they don’t normally go to, or they’re calling companies they don’t normally call. They’re also responding to ads they see on Facebook or other social sites. Things that they wouldn’t normally do but because it’s the gift giving season, they are doing it. We also see a spike in April and May in the U.S. because of taxes. Everyone is afraid of the IRS. So, if somebody calls you or sends you a letter or does anything that sounds like the IRS, it tends to invoke panic.

We’ve built this shared consortium of numbers that have sophisticated alert processes and rules for fraud detection. At Flowroute, now part of Intrado, we are continually improving our automated fraud detection system and we keep closely engaged with the other industry leaders to stay ahead of the fraudsters that are constantly trying new fraud schemes to infiltrate the communications ecosystem.