Tech expert weighs in on $2-mil. phone scam

Unsecure passwords can make it easy for someone to hack into a phone system. One tech support group says that’s one way a local business could have recently fallen prey to telephone fraud.
Police say one Milford street medical business was the victim of telephone fraud after multiple lines were compromised. Authorities say the hacker exploited the breach for two-million dollars in foreign phone calls.

Those calls were made to places like Gambia, Africa, the Ascension Coast off the coast of Africa, as well as Roseau, Dominica. It was only after the business was contacted by Verizon Wireless and AT&T that it found out what was happening.

Authorities say the hacker compromised the company’s answering service.

Seth Whaley is the director of marketing at Impact Technology Group in Salisbury. Whaley says secure passwords are the first step to protecting a business or consumer from being hacked.

In reference to the recent scam, Whaley says “The weak point was probably their voicemail password, so that was how they got in and they used the settings that were not changed in their system to actually exploit that ability.”

Police have not confirmed whether unsecured passwords are to blame, but it’s never a bad idea to better protect yourself.

Whaley recommends that when you pick your password to not use a sequence. He also says the longer, the better.

“No 1-2-3-4 no 1-1-1-1. I would recommend five to seven characters, really, at least. Because the longer it is, the more secure it is, obviously.” He explains.

Whaley also says to frequently check your phone bill to see if there is any suspicious activity, and to contact experts if you notice anything.

At last check, police say the fraud committed against the Milford Street business is still under investigation by Salisbury Police and the FBI.

Anyone with information should contact Salisbury Police at 410-548-3165.

Categories: Crime, Local News, Maryland, Tech