VoIP hackers run up $120,000 phone bill at Perth business

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Hackers have breached the VoIP PBX telephone system of a ‘small Perth business’ and made over 11,000 international calls in 46 hours, resulting in a bill in excess of $120,000, according to WA Police.

Hackers have breached the VoIP PBX telephone system of a ‘small Perth business’ and made over 11,000 international calls in 46 hours, resulting in a bill in excess of $120,000, according to WA Police.

Detectives from the West Australian Police Technology Crime Investigations unit said the business was only alerted to the security breach ‘when they received an invoice from their service provider’.

The unit detectives called sophisticated compromises of VoIP systems an ‘emerging trend’ and warned businesses ‘to utilise security software’ to help protect their systems.

“Business operators should invest in appropriate security software to protect their communication systems,” said Detective Sergeant Jamie McDonald.

“Most businesses are prepared to install firewalls on their computers but fail to extend that level of security to their phone systems.”

McDonald said that companies should be aware of ‘exactly what services are enabled [on VoIP systems]’.

He also advised administrators to change access passwords regularly.

WA Police said the ‘hack’ was similar to an exploit used by thieves on ‘older style PBX systems’ that enabled them to exploit the call-forwarding functionality and run up ‘huge international phone bills’.
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