Last year, Senators John Cornyn and Chuck Schumer introduced a bill to require ID when purchasing a pre-paid phone. This came shortly after the failed Time Square bombing, which was planned entirely using pre-paid phones. “This proposal is overdue because for years, terrorists, drug kingpins and gang members have stayed one step ahead of the law by using prepaid phones that are hard to trace. We caught a break in catching the Times Square terrorist, but usually a prepaid cell phone is a dead end for law enforcement. There’s no reason why it should still be this easy for terror plotters to cover their tracks,” Schumer said.
While pre-paid phones have been used to commit crimes for years, we are seeing more online fraudsters gravitate toward these anonymous, inexpensive phones. When a merchant manually calls a risky order to confirm the legitimacy, fraudsters will simply use a pre-paid or VOIP phone that they can throw away immediately after verifying. TeleSign’s PhoneID can identify these location-independent phone types that fraudsters acquire. While some countries require registration for a pre-paid phone, the US is still not close to passing similar legislation. This makes it incredibly important for online merchants and websites to use tools to identify the type of phone before someone makes a transaction on your website.
Contact TeleSign to learn about how to use PhoneID to cut down on online fraud.