Consumers Lose $40B Annually to Telemarketing Scams; ePlanet Offers Solutions

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Phone scams targeting U.S. citizens are a growing problem. Founder of ePlanet Communications, Asad Kahn, advises consumers on best practices to recognize the signs of a scam and how to react.

Asad Kahn, founder of ePlanet Communications, reviews best practices to handle BPO fraud

Businesses who hire a BPO company to do their contact call centers, need to be able to maintain a certain level of trust knowing their customers are being treated fairly and professionally.

As advances in telecommunications technology continue to make it easier to dupe the unsuspecting American with phone scams, business processing outsourcing (BPO) fraud is increasingly causing anxiety among U.S. lawmakers, courts, businesses and agencies. According to a Louis-Harris survey, 92% of U.S. adults report having received a fraudulent telemarketing call.1 In fact, all told consumers may lose about $40 billion a year through telemarketing scams.1 Businesses must also beware when choosing the right BPO service for their company.

In the U.S., enforcement of telecommunications fraud law has been difficult as many of these telemarketing scam calls are placed outside of the U.S.3 Using Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) technology, scammers are easily able to operate from anywhere and mask the origin of their calls.3 Recent raids in Mumbai, for instance, have uncovered a vast call center racket targeting over 366,000 Americans.2 Employees of this fake BPO company in India impersonated Internal Revenue Service (IRS) agents citing mistakes in their tax returns and threatening jail time if their demands for money were not met.2 Fraudulent calls from this BPO ring elicited $15.5 million from victims.2 Authorities believe the call centers in Mumbai may be just a small part of a huge international syndicate.2

“Telemarketing scams are a real concern for those in the BPO industry,” says Asad Khan, Founder of ePlanet Communications Inc, a global BPO provider. “BPO providers must offer as much transparency as possible to inspire confidence and ensure clients that their services are fair and reliable. To remain transparent, BPOs should provide the public with information about their organizational structure, commitment to the client, capabilities, investment areas and any other information that will not compromise security.”

Ethical companies originally used BPO to cut costs and increase efficiency, but over time BPO has become a necessity to drive revenue, remain competitive, and effectively connect with consumers.5 Global Industry Analysts, Inc. reported that the BPO industry as a whole is expected to reach $220 billion by 2020. This is in part due to the pressures for businesses to increase their customer satisfaction.6

“Businesses who hire a BPO company to do their contact call centers, need to be able to maintain a certain level of trust knowing their customers are being treated fairly and professionally,” adds Khan. He mentions that when stories of BPO fraud begin circulating around the business world, the level of trust in legitimate BPO companies is tarnished and it ultimately effects the entire industry. Khan advised consumers, if a caller seems suspicious, the best practice is to hang up and file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

“Phone scams can be very sophisticated,” says Khan. “Workers are trained to speak with an American accent and are taught persuasion tactics. We need to be sure that instances of fraud are reported to the FTC, in order to reestablish the sense of security in the BPO industry.”

ePlanet Communications is a well-established and trusted partner for businesses globally, rapidly emerging as a go-to resource within the U.S. and abroad. As the market for BPO services surges, Khan urges businesses to implement a complete turnkey solution for companies looking to create or extend their network.

About ePlanet Communications:

ePlanet Communications is a global business process outsourcing provider with extensive experience in call center operations, digital media solutions, and direct response solutions. By using its integrated channel management capabilities and highly-trained staff, ePlanet develops and deploys inbound and outbound customer support fully integrated with its clients’ marketing campaigns. Digital media solutions include website design, digital franchising, fully functioning eCommerce operations, and the creation of interactive, immersive and responsive social media campaigns across different platforms. ePlanet is also highly experienced in the area of direct response trial, consistently delivering improved customer satisfaction, increased customer retention, and better order value. To learn more about ePlanet and its capabilities, please visit http://www.eplanetcom.com.

1.    Achneiderman, Eric T. "Telemarketing Fraud." New York State Office of the Attorney General. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Jan. 2017.

2.    Lal, Neeta. "BPO Fraud in India on the Rise." Asia Sentinel. N.p., 28 Oct. 2016. Web. 10 Jan. 2017.

3.    Erb, Kelly Phillips. "Dozens Arrested In IRS Phone Scam Call Center Raids." Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 06 Oct. 2016. Web. 10 Jan. 2017.

4.    "Phone Scams." Federal Trade Commission. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Jan. 2017.

5.    "Top 5 BPM Trends to Watch out for in 2017." Top 5 BPM Trends to Watch in 2017 - Moneycontrol.com. N.p., 10 Jan. 2017. Web. 12 Jan. 2017.

6.    “Adoption of value added BPO services to drive gains in the business process outsourcing market, according to a new report by Global Industry Analysts, Inc.” Global Industry Analysts, Inc. Web.

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