9/1/2010 11:50:00 AM
Police calls on mobile industry to fight fraud
The City of London Police are calling on the mobile industry to work alongside their fraud squad to tackle international revenue share fraud.
The move comes after it recently emerged that O2 had been hit by international revenue share fraud and lost £1.2m over one month.
The police arrested nine people on 18 August alleged to be involved in international revenue share fraud.
The group is believed to have been part of an elaborate scam where they were buying contract phones with fake ID and then shipping the Sim cards abroad. The Sim cards would then be used to call premium rate lines set up by the gang at a rate of £10 per minute.
DCI Dave Clark said: ‘I would applaud O2 for coming to us, as sometimes businesses do not want to expose themselves because of company reputation.
It [international revenue share fraud] is an industry wide problem and we are putting out an invitation to other service providers to come and work with us.’
He added that the bust was ‘hugely significant’ because of the size of the ring and said the arrests had hit the gang in a ‘strategic place’.
The criminal investigation was the second of its kind in 18 months.
O2 had been working on the investigation for several months before contacting the police with details of the fraud.
O2 head of fraud and security Adrian Gorham said: ‘A lot of the analytical work had been done for the police already and it was quite a serious organised fraud. It is another incidence of a type of fraud that affects all operators, and organised criminals were behind it.’
He added: ‘There are discussions at industry level to stop this happening with GSM. We want to distract people from doing it. I am proud that the O2 investigators have done such a good job in finding these criminals.’
Several of the people arrested have been charged by police and are due in court in October.