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Level 3: Thinker
Posts: 100
Registered: ‎03-01-2013

Re: Sim Boxes

T-Mobile Facing $1.25 Billion Legal Action For Blocking GSM Gateways

Published on: 15th Jul 2008


T Mobile UK is facing a potential £625 million (USD1.25 billion) lawsuit for damages from a former reseller of SIM cards VIP Communications. The claim is based on a report which VIP Communications says was prepared by T Mobile internal staff to calculate the economic impact of VIP Communications' business model valued at some £57 million per year.

VIP Communications is a telecoms reseller which was until 2004 offering GSM Gateway products - these are routers which typically sit inside an office PBX and direct office landline to mobile calls via a GSM SIM card. As on network mobile to mobile calls are typically cheaper - the business model is that a GSM Gateway would lower an office call costs. However, the operators have previously argued that GSM Gateways create an abnormal concentration of outbound mobile call traffic in a specific area and disrupt their networks.

The UK trade magazine, Mobile News said that T-Mobile has not yet received a legal claim and dismissed the actions. A spokesperson said "VIP complained to Oftel [Ofcom] around five years ago that T-Mobile had discriminated against it by terminating services to illegal SIM boxes it was operating,"

"VIP also threatened to sue us at that time, but have never done so. Ofcom found in our favour."

GSM Gateways have caused sufficient problems for network operators that some companies have developed tools to detect their presence in a network. Sevis Systems launched such a product in 2006 which it said was designed to target what it called SIM Box Fraud - mainly aimed at users who try to bypass the local landline operator's monopoly on international traffic. The GSM Association also published a white paper in 2003 which claimed that the use of GSM Gateways for traffic reselling "could constitute a fraud."

VIP Communications is currently engaged in further legal action in the UK's High Court of Appeal to overturn the decision to block it from selling T-Mobile SIM cards for use in the GSM Gateways. If VIP wins the legal action - then it could open a flood of litigation from other previous resellers who were all cut off around the same time from selling SIM cards @Anonymous
Anonymous
Posts: 0

Re: Sim Boxes

Hey!

 

Definetly legal but.... you need permission from your provider.. the person who's quering this would need to write into O2, at the 260 Bath Road, Slough address. It's covered under section 6.4 of the T&C's...

 

6.4 You must not establish, install or use a Gateway Device or SIM Box without our prior written consent (including devices tethered via cable, Bluetooth or wifi, to a computer or the internet, when used for making large volumes of calls or sending large volumes of texts). We can withhold our consent for this activity at our absolute discretion.

 

Hope this helps!

 

MrTomes Smiley Happy

 

Posts: 84,058
Topics: 580
Solutions: 4,250
Registered: ‎04-01-2009

Re: Sim Boxes


@Anonymous wrote:

Hey!

 

Definetly legal but.... you need permission from your provider.. the person who's quering this would need to write into O2, at the 260 Bath Road, Slough address. It's covered under section 6.4 of the T&C's...

 

6.4 You must not establish, install or use a Gateway Device or SIM Box without our prior written consent (including devices tethered via cable, Bluetooth or wifi, to a computer or the internet, when used for making large volumes of calls or sending large volumes of texts). We can withhold our consent for this activity at our absolute discretion.

 

Hope this helps!

 

MrTomes Smiley Happy

 


Are we to presume @Anonymous that you work for O2?

Level 3: Thinker
Posts: 100
Registered: ‎03-01-2013

Re: Sim Boxes

Big Fraud at Novafone: Technician Arrested; CEO ‘Person of Interest’ in Sim Box Scam - See more at: http://www.frontpageafricaonline.com/old/businesstech/marketfinance/7721-big-fraud-at-novafone-techn...
“I can confirmed to you that Hussein Dakroub(pictured) was arrested, Friday and we are pressing charges. We are working in concert with the LTA and the Police to try and determine how much damage has been done. We are pressing charges and we lost a great deal of money; it is fraud, illegal and we will be pressing charges.” - Rebecca McKitterick, Chief Commercial Officer at Novafone

Monrovia – In what investigators are dubbing the biggest cellular technology fraud in recent memory for Liberia, Novafone, which recently replaced Comium as a cellular carrier, is pressing criminal charges against one of its own employees,  Hussein Dakroub, a Lebanese national who is the company’s ISP Technical Supervisor for illegally operating a device that was stealing from Novafone, the Liberia Telecommunications Authority(LTA), the government of Liberia as well as rival carriers, Lonestarcell/MTN and Cellcom.

Investigators have also informed FrontPageAfrica that the company’s CEO Chady Salim is being considered a Person of Interest in the case and that more people may be involved in the scam.

Investigative source confided to FPA that Dakroub claimed to investigators that he received the device from Salim, the former CEO whose whereabouts are unknown. A source confided to FPA that Chady may currently be in neighboring Sierra Leone.

Novafone losing ‘Great Deal of Money’

The police source told FrontPageAfrica over the weekend that the theft is costing massive losses to the Liberia Telecommunications Authority and the other two major carriers, Cellcom and Lonestarcell. The source added that Novafone noticed the boxes missing a few months ago but never reported the matter to the LTA or authorities.

Rebecca McKitterick, Chief Commercial Officer at Novafone confirmed to FrontPageAfrica Sunday that Dakroub was in custody and the company is pressing charges: “I can confirmed to you that He(Hussein Dakroub) was arrested, Friday and we are pressing charges. We are working in concert with the LTA and the Police to try and determine how much damage has been done. We are pressing charges and we lost a great deal of money; it is fraud, illegal and we will be pressing charges.”

Device Illegal, LTA Says

Ms. Mariam Kaba, Acting Commissioner, International Gateway Management System at the LTA told FPA Sunday that the LTA is aware and monitoring the case. “I was there Friday and was on the ground when the perpetrator was arrested. We are trying to work with law enforcement to ensure that the perpetrator is not released because if he is released it will be a problem.”

Asked whether it is legal to possess the device in Liberia, Kaba said the Sim Boxes are illegal in Liberia. It is unclear how the box arrived on Novafone property.

The device known as Sim Boxes is not a new phenomenon, cellular companies across Africa are said to be losing millions in revenues due to call redirection, service inaccessibility and missing callbacks.

Cellular technology experts say the SIM Boxes remain a major problem for many network operators, having also negative effects on roaming hub providers and customers alike because they decrease operator revenues due to call redirection, service inaccessibility and missing callbacks. The quality is also said to decreases significantly when SIM Boxes redirect calls over inadequate, highly compressed IP connections, which results in image loss and dissatisfied customers.

Usually Results in Poor Quality Calls

Police investigators have informed FrontPageAfrica that the company’s CEO Chady Salim is being considered a Person of Interest in the case and that more people may be involved in the scam.

The device is reportedly hampering the quality of calls between subscribers and networks resulting in poor quality on calls to mobile phones at home or abroad.

Critics point to high interconnect fees as a key reason why fraudsters are engaging in the sim box fraud because some mobile operators are charging too much for connections from other networks and concentrating on offering cheap on-net calls instead - including free minutes, or in some countries, flat rate voice calls. As a result, some technology nerds are turning to the Sim boxes to bypass interconnect fees using devices called SIM boxes, or GSM gateways where two phones on different networks, are rigged so that a call arriving on one is routed out again on the other. To the networks involved - which can be mobile or fixed - each call appears to start and end on its own network, so no interconnect fee is payable.

The gateways are run by third-party carriers who sell their services on to mobile and fixed line operators, offering them connections to other networks for less than the usual interconnect fee. But experts say most of those service are poor quality because a large concentration of modems and SIM cards in one location, and the networks are not designed to handle such a load.

Meucci, a company based in Belgium detects SIM boxes using its own SIM-equipped probes which it connects to the various telcos in each country. These continually dial each other and measure the call quality to determine how the call was delivered.

Nigerians Nabbed in Similar Scam Recently

SIM boxes are legal in most, though not all countries. They are said to be legal in the UK for one's own use, but not for providing commercial services, for example - so they are really a business issue for the mobile operators which they can best deal with by cutting their interconnect rates to more realistic levels.

The device known as Sim Boxes is not a new phenomenon, cellular companies across Africa are said to be losing millions in revenues due to call redirection, service inaccessibility and missing callbacks.

Ironically, Dakroub was hired to curb such a practice at Novafone, a source told FrontPageAfrica. FrontPageAfrica has been informed that a few weeks ago, some Nigerians were arrested in Point Four recently in Monrovia.

Sim Boxes fraudsters have also hit neighboring countries like Ghana which recently took steps to curb the practice. The clampdown led to a Ghana anti fraud collaboration between the National Communications Authority (NCA), all telecom service providers in the country and the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service which led to the arrest of a six-members SIM Box syndicate operating between Oregon in the United States of America and Accra, Ghana. Members of the syndicate had according to investigators, carried out the illegal termination of telephone calls also known as SIM box operations in the last seven months during which, it deprived telecom operators and the state revenue in the region of GH¢7.2 million about US $ 4.5m.

Comium Liberia relaunched under the ‘Novafone’ banner in July 2012 and immediately deployed a Dual Carrier (DC)-HSPA+ platform across its network, supporting theoretical downlink transmission speeds of up to 42Mbps, which it markets as ‘4G’. The company was targeting a 20% market share in the short-term, a feat many industry watchers say is a daunting task considering the massive inroads rivals Lonestarcell and Cellcom has already made on the market.

Comium Group has been on the downhill of late. Like Liberia, the company’s debt-laden operation in Cote d’Ivoire was put up for sale with India’s Bharti Airtel and Nigeria’s Globacom among the suitors. Speculations were rife recently that that Comium’s Sierra Leone subsidiary was raided by the authorities over unpaid debts, and its future hangs in the balance.

Novafone is reportedly said to be in a dogfight to make serious inroads in the Liberian market despite its massive publicity push since replacing Comium in September. It is unclear how the Sim Boxes scam will affect the company’s commercial appeal in its quest to make gains on rivals Lonestarcell/MTN and Cellcom.
Anonymous
Posts: 0

Re: Sim Boxes

DJC1690

You're staying the abuse which individuals use Sim Box's for that doesn't mean that everyone else will use a sim box in the way that's like saying ban phones because they have the potential of damaging a cell site tower everything has a pro and a con when it comes to these types of things. You've just pointed it at a bad cause anything can be abused.
Posts: 99,153
Topics: 765
Registered: ‎14-01-2013

Re: Sim Boxes


@jonsie wrote:

@Anonymous wrote:

Hey!

 

Definetly legal but.... you need permission from your provider.. the person who's quering this would need to write into O2, at the 260 Bath Road, Slough address. It's covered under section 6.4 of the T&C's...

 

6.4 You must not establish, install or use a Gateway Device or SIM Box without our prior written consent (including devices tethered via cable, Bluetooth or wifi, to a computer or the internet, when used for making large volumes of calls or sending large volumes of texts). We can withhold our consent for this activity at our absolute discretion.

 

Hope this helps!

 

MrTomes Smiley Happy

 


Are we to presume @Anonymous that you work for O2?


According to his signature @jonsie  it would appear so.....Smiley Wink

*The Game Is On*

Most-Helpful-MemberFriendliest-MemberMost-Useful-GuideBest-Feedbacker
Posts: 84,058
Topics: 580
Solutions: 4,250
Registered: ‎04-01-2009

Re: Sim Boxes

There was no signature when he replied to this post, just been added after I posted this Smiley Wink

Posts: 99,153
Topics: 765
Registered: ‎14-01-2013

Re: Sim Boxes


@jonsie wrote:

There was no signature when he replied to this post, just been added after I posted this Smiley Wink


I thought that must have been the case....Bouncy

*The Game Is On*

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Anonymous
Posts: 0

Re: Sim Boxes

Yep!

 

Sorry guys - just setting my profile up! Smiley Happy

Anonymous
Posts: 0

Re: Sim Boxes

[ Edited ]

Do you want to prove it?

 

(Anyone can create a profile at near to midnight when probably no community admins are online and say they work for O2)