Scam calls via Skype are declining

Posted: November 27, 2012 in IT Security News
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Skype

Scam calls via Skype

Microsoft says that the Internet phone service Skype is struggling with the use of Internet-based applications are sent by users of the service database links to fraudulent websites, as well as with users of Skype, using this system to the needs of direct marketing. Over the past six months, the number of such programs and the accounts of spammers significantly decreased.

Adrian Asher, chief security Skype, said that earlier in the internet telephony can often be seen when a user receives an incoming call, and on the other end of the automated system will start playing recorded advertising message. Often in such a way to advertise counterfeit goods, fraudulent websites and various illegal activities. The complexity of the struggle against such phenomena was that the fraudulent numbers and websites have a short period of life that is rarely more than a week, and often limited to a few days.

Asher says that fraudsters abusing function Skype, which allows calls to unknown recipients, without the prior approval of the latter. In Skype previously tried to introduce new security settings that would initially block calls from unknown users when the settings are not otherwise indicated, but in the process of voting by users were against this innovation.

This decision put service administration with a dilemma: how to block spammers, but not be limited to the normal user calls. At any given time, Skype are about 47 million users, so real-time fraud detection is very difficult. “Initially, the scammers contact with victims through instant messaging, sending the latest malicious links, but Skype has changed the security settings and the problem is no longer so relevant,” – says Asher.

After that, scammers started sending victims of malicious data in requests to the contacts. Since search engine users at once brings hundreds of user names, the scammers also receive an effective tool spam.

Now Skype are trying different methods to deal with the automated “dialer” that operate on lists of users. As Skype said that the “dialer” work differently, so finding one way to deal with them is impossible. Today, the only effective way to block this kind remains customizing, Block incoming calls from unknown parties Skype.

Yet in the Skype say that taking steps to automatically detect “dialers” and many filters in the program allow for 1-3 seconds to determine the advertisement distribution.

The best way to stop the calls is to change Skype’s privacy settings to only allow communications from vetted contacts.

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