Risk and Assurance Group Toronto 2019 Conference

The conference poster highlighting the Global sponsirs

On June 19th and 20th I was please to participate in RAG Toronto 2019, the North American conference put on by the Risk and Assurance Group (RAG) held at Telus Harbour (next to Scotiabank Arena, home of the 2019 NBA Champion Toronto Raptors ! see my post https://www.amitel.com/raptors/)

The Risk & Assurance Group was set up in 2003 by UK telcos and its original name was the Revenue Assurance Group. RAG allowed practitioners to share advice about this new discipline. They discussed issues, wrote papers, and their work shaped RA, as members took jobs with telcos and vendors around the world. RAG changed with its members, encouraging more widespread participation around the world. Remaining at the cutting edge of assurance, RAG covers fraud management, enterprise risk management, law enforcement liaison, credit risk and security.

I attended for two main reasons; to learn more about the latest in telecom fraud mitigation and to network with telco fraud professionals from Canada and overseas. One of the keys in combatting telecom fraud is co-operaton. Telcos must work together and that was the theme of the opening panel of the conference with speakers from the Big 3; Telus, Bell and Rogers. Co-operation and information sharing about fraud trends is key; that is why AurorA is a member of the i3Forum of carriers as on of their mandates is also the Fight Against Fraud.

The conference highlighted hot topics in telecom fraud management, the increased prevalence of Wangiri fraud, selling anti-fraud as a service and the RAG Wangiri Blockchain Project to help combat that scourge worldwide. There were other good sessions more geared to revenue assurance, cybersecurity and the coming IoT world but telecom fraud was what I was most interested in.

Selling anti-fraud as a service is something that I don’t believe in, at least for AurorA. As AurorA is a wholesale carrier and does not serve consumer, SMB or enterprise customers directly, I have always felt that providing fraud mitigation is a key part of the service offering . It has to be a part of it, especially as a premium service. It turns out that it is a key differentiator for AurorA as many of the competitors who offer cheaper rates per minute often do very little anti-fraud front. A cheap rate doesn’t help you when your network is under attack !

The networking was also worthwhile, especially with the organizers from RAG in the UK. They were very friendly, welcoming and open and free with sharing information. Post show, I signed AurorA up to become a RAG member.

Thanks also to Telus for hosting the conference in their lovely Telus Harbour building. I look forward to attending the next RAG North American event in 2020.

i3Forum and the Fight Against Fraud

In 2007, eight of the world’s leading carriers set up the i3Forum. It was initially meant to expedite the international telecommunication’s industry to IP but has since broadened its mission. The i3forum’s approach is open, simple and pragmatic and it aims to;

• Represent : the views of the International Carrier Ecosystem
• Bring together : focus on topics that require joint work and collaboration across the Ecosystem
• Transform : enable and facilitate the role of carriers in the timely emergence of new ecosystems, and new technical, operational and commercial models
• Guide : publish recommendations for industry Stakeholders
• Share : foster cooperation and sharing of best practices between industry stakeholders
• Educate : contribute to the industry learning on these topics
• Inform : provide market research, case studies, position papers…

The i3forum now has 29 members including such major carriers as AT&T, iBasis, Telefonica, Orange, Tata, T-systems, Vodafone and others.

The i3forum has a roadmap and focuses on a few key topics that require industry collaboration . The one that is near and dear to AurorA’s heart is the Fight against Fraud.

Fraud in international telecommunications is a huge and growing issue. Hackers and criminal gangs now make more money from Telecom Fraud than they do selling illegal drugs. It is an issue that cannot be resolved by any one single carrier; we need to work together as an industry to combat this scourge.

I am honoured and humbled to announce that AurorA International Telecommunications Inc. has been accepted into the i3forum as a member, specifically as a “Friend of i3forum” . AurorA believes and supports what the i3forum is trying to accomplish, especially in the Fight against Fraud. I hope to be able to get information, updates and best practices and also be able to contribute where I can. On social media, and here on this blog, AurorA plans to promote the i3forum and its objectives.

Thank you to the i3forum. Stay tuned to this blog as we continue to share information with you on how to combat telecom fraud.

Give Thanks for Protection from Telecom Fraud


It is an unfortunate fact that the hackers of the world like to plan their attacks on public holidays when network supervision may not be at its highest.

Please remember to be vigilant this Thanksgiving Weekend and guard access to your switches. For those in Kitchener/Waterloo, enjoy the Gemütlichkeit of Oktoberfest, but please be careful to ensure your network is protected first before indulging.

AurorA has to deliver any traffic that is sent to it , so you are responsible for any unauthorized access to your network. AurorA will pass on any alerts that it gets of suspicious traffic patterns. AurorA has also implemented automatic blocking of B numbers once we detect a suspicious fraudulent traffic pattern in an attempt to minimize losses.

As highlighted on this blog AurorA has taken other steps such as the weekly reports of suspicous blocked call attempts, an industry leading robust and accurate dial plan and intensified focus on high quality terminating routes.

We will stay vigilant, it is part of the value add of sending all your international traffic to AurorA.
Premium quality and the best mitigation of fraud.

Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving long weekend !

Timo Vainionpaa

Happy Dominion Day !

It is an unfortunate fact that the hackers of the world like to plan their attacks on public holidays when network supervision may not be at its highest.

Please remember to be vigilant this Dominion Day (Canada Day for all you young’uns) and guard access to your switches.

AurorA has to deliver any traffic that is sent to it , so you are responsible for any unauthorized access to your network. AurorA will pass on any alerts that it gets of suspicious traffic patterns. AurorA has also implemented automatic blocking of B numbers once we detect a suspicious fraudulent traffic pattern in an attempt to minimize losses.

As highlighted on this blog AurorA has taken other steps such as the weekly reports of suspicous blocked call attempts, robust and accurate dial plan and intensified focus on high quality terminating routes.

Have a safe and happy long weekend !

Timo Vainionpaa

Victoria Day, Royal Weddings and Fraud

This weekend is the unofficial start of summer here in Canada, with the first long weekend of the season. It is the Victoria Day weekend, more commonly known as May Two-Four. On top of that there will be a Royal Wedding on Saturday as Prince Harry and Ms. Meghan Markle tie the knot at St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle. And that will be followed by the FA Cup being contested at Wembley Stadium (Go Chelsea !).

ALERT ! It is an unfortunate fact that the hackers of the world like to plan their attacks on public holidays when network supervision may not be at its highest. There is so much going on that the criminals will be out in force relying on our attention being diverted elsewhere.

Please remember to be vigilant this Victoria Day long weekend and guard access to your switches.

AurorA has to deliver any traffic that is sent to it , so you are responsible for any unauthorized access to your network. AurorA will pass on any alerts that it gets of suspicious traffic patterns. AurorA has also implemented automatic blocking of B numbers once we detect a suspicious fraudulent traffic pattern in an attempt to minimize losses.

As highlighted on this blog AurorA has taken other steps such as the weekly reports of suspicous blocked call attempts, robust and accurate dial plan and intensified focus on high quality terminating routes.

Have a safe and happy Victoria Day weekend and enjoy the fireworks. Blessings to the Royal couple, Harry and Meghan.

Timo Vainionpaa

Telecom Fraud never takes a holiday

It is an unfortunate fact that the hackers of the world like to plan their attacks on public holidays when network supervision may not be at its highest.

Please remember to be vigilant this Easter season and guard access to your switches.

AurorA has to deliver any traffic that is sent to it , so you are responsible for any unauthorized access to your network. AurorA will pass on any alerts that it gets of suspicious traffic patterns. AurorA has also implemented automatic blocking of B numbers once we detect a suspicious fraudulent traffic pattern in an attempt to minimize losses. 

As highlighted on this blog AurorA has taken other steps such as the weekly reports of suspicous blocked call attempts, robust and accurate dial plan and intensified focus on high quality terminating routes.

Have a safe and happy Easter season .

Timo Vainionpaa