BICS Statistics Reveal Growth in Blocked Fraudulent Calls

International connectivity enabler BICS has released staggering statistics revealing its fight against fraudulent spam calls and robocalls in 2023.

In a battle against the rising tide of telecom fraud, international connectivity enabler BICS has released staggering statistics revealing its fight against fraudulent spam calls and robocalls in 2023. The data, unveiled by BICS, indicates a significant surge in blocked calls compared to the previous year, highlighting the escalating threat of telecom fraud worldwide.

According to the report, BICS thwarted a whopping 507 million fraudulent spam calls and robocalls across its network in 2023, marking a substantial 28% increase from the 395 million calls blocked in 2022. Alongside the impressive call blockage figures, BICS also managed to save its customers a substantial €87 million in estimated costs of wholesale fraud exposure.

The disclosed figures underscore an alarming persistence and growing complexity in telecom fraud schemes, as highlighted by the International Telecoms Week (ITW) Global Leaders’ Forum (GLF). The GLF recently reported that 92% of carriers are prioritizing fraud prevention measures in response to the escalating threat landscape.

To combat the surge in fraudulent calls, BICS deployed its advanced FraudGuard solution, which leverages an extensive network of over 900 service providers. This solution employs a crowdsourcing model to automatically analyze BICS’ global traffic and provide round-the-clock protection against malicious attacks.

Jorn Vercamert, Vice President for Customer Solutions and Products at BICS, expressed concerns over the detrimental impact of robocalls on trust in communications. He emphasized the need for enhanced collaboration initiatives between telecom operators and regulators to combat the growing menace of fraudulent activities. BICS has been actively advocating for greater industry collaboration through its participation in discussions held by the i3 Forum and its recent involvement in the One Consortium initiative.

Beyond robocall attacks, the report also sheds light on the alarming rise of SMS frauds, particularly smishing attacks, which involve sending fraudulent text messages to deceive individuals into revealing personal information. In total, BICS proactively blocked 473 million smishing attempts in 2023, reflecting a steep upward trajectory in messaging fraud.

European citizens emerged as the primary targets of smishing attacks, with 80% of the identified attacks targeting EU citizens, totaling 54 million individuals. The report identified France, Poland, Chad, Spain, and Germany as the top countries originating smishing attacks, with Belgium and the UK being the intended destinations for 30% of the blocked attacks.

Katia Gonzalez, Head of Fraud Prevention and Security Services at BICS, warned of the impending threat posed by robotexts, stressing that they could surpass robocalls as a major threat to consumers and enterprises. Gonzalez emphasized the need for regulatory frameworks to address SMS fraud effectively and called for unified efforts from telcos and government bodies to combat this evolving threat landscape.

BICS’ commitment to combating fraud has been recognized by industry bodies, with the GLF naming the company among the 22 carriers compliant with the GLF Code of Conduct for combatting fraud traffic. Additionally, BICS’ FraudGuard platform received acclaim from Juniper Research, earning a Telco Innovation Award for its effectiveness in mitigating international voice fraud.

As telecom fraud continues to evolve and pose significant challenges to the industry, BICS remains at the forefront of innovation, striving to safeguard its network and customers against emerging threats. With collaboration and advanced technological solutions, the battle against telecom fraud enters a new phase of vigilance and resilience.