International Revenue Share Fraud (IRSF) – Emerging Telecoms Fraud that makes your head spin.

Apart from the threat of PBX fraud, International Revenue Share Fraud or ‘IRSF Fraud’ as it’s popularly known is another emerging threat that affects all operators, big and small.

IRSF is generally perpetrated by fraudsters obtaining SIM cards from a home country – likely using compromised or stolen identities – and shipping them off to another country. The SIMs are then used to call revenue share numbers – probably located in another country. This head spinning activity makes the detection extremely difficult and prosecution virtually impossible as it spans several countries.

The worldwide IRSF losses are staggering and the CFCA global survey pegs it close to $4 billion and predicts that it is set to rise before it’s controlled.

The top 5 fraud loss categories reported by operators:

Telecoms Fraud Top 5 Fraud Loss Categories

Telecom Operators rated IRSF as one of the top emerging threats:

Telecoms Fraud Emerging Threats

Source: CFCA Global Fraud Loss Survey 2011 . You can obtain a copy of this by registering in their website.

I recommend reading the interview ‘International Revenue Share Fraud: Are We Winning the Battle Against Telecom Pirates?’ given by the industry veteran Colin Yates. This is a definitive article covering a range of topics such as the origins of IRSF Fraud, typical fraud scenarios, efforts taken by the industry to combat IRSF and future outlook.

While efforts are being taken by the industry to tackle this head-on, it is still a major source of revenue loss for operators and it will be a few years before IRSF Fraud is fully controlled. FRS Labs in partnership with Yates Fraud Consulting has developed a Test Number Database (PRISM) with over 70,000 numbers to help operators control IRSF.

Read our PRISM FAQ to find out more about how to control IRSF.

Read more on what is IRSF Fraud here.


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