Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Users call on operators to stop SMS spam

Telsis
Tuesday 26 November 13

Mobile phone users are fed up with the rising tide of text spam – and they want network operators to block it. That’s the blunt message from a survey conducted by British technology company Telsis across a sample of phone users aged between 19 and 70. More than 80% of respondents say text spam is irritating, and 73% say networks should protect them from text spam in the same way that Internet companies provide protection from junk email. Phone networks doing so would be rewarded by an influx of new customers…

Mobile phone users are fed up with the rising tide of text spam – and they want network operators to block it.

That’s the blunt message from a survey conducted by British technology company Telsis across a sample of phone users aged between 19 and 70.

More than 80% of respondents say text spam is irritating, and 73% say networks should protect them from text spam in the same way that Internet companies provide protection from junk email.

Phone networks doing so would be rewarded by an influx of new customers. Fourteen percent of those surveyed are ‘very’ likely to move to a network that provides comprehensive spam protection while more than 68% categorise themselves as ‘maybe’ movers.

“Text spam is not just an irritation, it has a victim every time,” says Telsis marketing head Nigel Shaw. “We know that 15 people fall for spam for every one person that reports it. Phone users being lured into calling premium-rate numbers. Others conned into divulging personal information such as bank account details. Even networks themselves are not immune. They are being defrauded of revenues by being manipulated into delivering massive volumes of advertising for free. No-one except the spammers win.

“As people’s frustration at receiving unwanted messages continues to grow, better protection is becoming a hot issue for every network,” continues Shaw. “We know from our work with operators around the world that only 0.04% of spam messaging is reported. Even if a network does block a spam source as a result of receiving multiple complaints, the spammers simply move onto another number and the cycle starts all over again.”

Content filtering is the default anti-spam, anti-fraud technology for most networks. Derived from email security, it spots undesirable patterns in content. But today’s spammers and those who commit other forms of text fraud know that even the most robust content filtering is powerless if messaging can be routed around content filtering - and this is increasingly what they are doing. Another growing form of fraud, used primarily by aggregators to avoid paying normal bulk messaging charges, is so-called grey messaging.

Telsis says that by adding transport layer protection to carry out address verification and profiling, operators can defeat these types of attack. Moreover, because the additional layer of protection traps the vast majority of unwanted traffic, content filtering can then be used to provide a more nuanced second tier of protection. Adding transport layer protection costs operators just a few Euro cents per subscriber.

Concludes Shaw: “As the survey shows, networks that deploy transport layer protection will generate substantial brand value and attract new customers, as well as better protect themselves from fraud. We think they will also be better placed to benefit from the predicted growth in application to person messaging. If phone users can trust their network to protect them, then they will be much more inclined to embrace A2P.”

The Telsis mission is to enrich people's lives through innovations in communications technology and services. Over 25 years, Telsis has provided tier-1 network operators with flexible infrastructure and compelling services in voice, text and video. From TDM, through IP-based networks to IMS and LTE, Telsis provides evolutionary solutions to match customers' network developments and enable the provision of advanced services today.

Telsis’ portfolio of services is backed by proven engineering skills, system integration expertise, and a deep understanding of human factors, all of which combine in solutions that enable operators to offer their customers exciting and practical services with compelling real-world appeal.


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