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Outfit looks to reduce Mobile Roaming Fraud

MACH, a clearing and settlement partner for mobile based transactions, announced the launch of the MACH Data Express file conversion and logistics service, a unique early warning system that can detect roaming fraud and help operators reduce revenue leakage. As roaming fraud becomes more prevalent Near Real Time Roaming Data Exchange (NRTRDE) systems are set to become a GSMA requirement to minimise roaming fraud loss.

Operators are particularly vulnerable to fraud attacks during peak times such as weekends or holidays when the fraudsters are extremely active. To combat this problem MACH Data Express has been configured to be on patrol 24 hours day, 365 days a year. By deploying this system, operators will be able to comply with the GSMA's NTRTDE initiative that will become mandatory next year.

The system was developed to prevent mobile operators having to restrict roaming service levels as a way of reducing the impact of fraud. With the innovative file conversion and logistics service at their disposal, operators can continue to develop roaming services as a serious revenue generator.

Anette Svensen, Product Manager at MACH commented: "Compared to the existing High Usage Reports (HURs), home operators are faced with a new task once they start receiving NRTRDE - these files report all roaming usage but without any preliminary identification of fraudulent data.

Operators should carefully evaluate the effect NRTRDE will have on their current fraud detection procedures and initiate an action to redesign their current procedure, if needed".

Annual telecoms fraud is on the increase. Typically 80% of international roaming fraud directly impacts on the P&L statement of the 'home operator'; this is underlined by the fact that the external cost is due to the liability of the 'visited network operator'. As a result of this, 'home networks' are becoming a lot more careful when selecting a roaming partner, preferring to choose operators that can offer protection from roaming fraud through Near Real Time visibility of roaming subscribers.

Home and visited networks will soon be able to offer each other the same levels of protection from fraud losses. With NRTRDE being broadly deployed across the GSM community as a stipulation of the GSMA, the time limit on transfer of liability from visited network to home network will be reduced drastically to 4 hours maximum.

"The whole purpose of NRTRDE is to provide early visibility of a roaming subscriber's usage and thus be able to detect possible fraud much faster and limit the fraud loss. The operators' fraud detection procedure should be optimized to utilize this improvement - they need to plan ahead to ensure that processes and potential complications, such as adequate planning of trained resources to manage the increased frequency of reports and data, are in place.", Anette Svendson continued.

In order to prepare for the new GSMA regulations mobile operators should evaluate the effect NRTRDE will have on their current fraud detection procedures and initiate an action to redesign their current procedure.

Implementing MACH Data Express will ensure that data processing and reporting streams will not be affected when the new directive is introduced on October 8th 2008.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.