Perils of VOIP area code scamming revealed in Japan

I was interested to read an article in the Yomiuri Shumbun, the Japanese daily newspaper, yesterday, about how fraudsters have been using the latest Internet telephony services to part punters from their money.

In common with the UK, VOIP service providers in Japan now allow customers to use NNG (national numbering group) area codes for their Net telephony numbers.

This allows fraudsters to give out Tokyo-based area code numbers, when, in fact, their calls could originate and be answered from, almost anywhere in the world

The fraudsters told investigators they used the fake area code to trick their targets into believing they had called from central Tokyo, when, in fact they could be calling from anywhere.

This fooled Tokyo-based punters into thinking that they could always `pop round' to the company if anything untoward happened to their payments.

Fraudsters, meanwhile, are reportedly carrying out the most outrageous scams, sure in the knowledge that PC Plod has a minimal chance of actually tracking them down.

This started me wondering how long it will be before UK fraudsters realise the potential that VOIP calls offer them...