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Ofcom warn people not to trust caller ID

May 2021 by Nikolay Gaubitch, Director of Research EMEA at Pindrop

Following the breaking news story which found the UK telecoms regulator is warning the public not to trust caller ID on their phones as it tries to help stop people becoming victims of fraud. A director at Ofcom, says caller ID should not be used as a means of verifying a caller’s identification. Fraudsters are increasingly changing their caller ID to disguise their identity, known as number spoofing. The Commentary from Nikolay Gaubitch, Director of Research EMEA at Pindrop.

“Voice or telephony fraud is prevalent, in the UK and across the world.

It is encouraging to see regulators like Ofcom spreading the word and warning consumers of the threat. A common tactic for fraudsters is to not only change their caller I.D. but also to modify their voice in order to disguise their identity or impersonate an organisation, and with modern telephony development this has become very easy with readily available prankster smartphone apps’. Throughout this past year, consumers have been spending more time on the phone, as this became our only available communication channel and fraudsters are no exception. Therefore, it’s vital for consumers to be alert and for organisations to put appropriate safeguards in place. Two pieces of advice I always give: 1) always verify who you are speaking to, especially if they call you, and 2) if still in doubt, don’t give away any personal information or payment details and instead, hang up, and call the company’s customer services team on their official contact number.”

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