Call Centre Dialler

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Blue Telecoms - Call centre Dialler
Blue Telecoms – Call Centre Dialler 

Website: http://www.bluetelecoms.com

Both outbound and inbound call centres rely heavily on diallers to significantly increase the performance of their sales agents. The most common issue the call centres that we speak to experience, is the amount of dead time agents have while waiting for calls, as well as how campaign data is utilized.

Outbound diallers, such as VICIdial, are used to make multiple outbound calls per agent to the data lists in your campaigns, and then connect only human answered calls to your agents.

The main difference between a predictive dialler, and other sorts of diallers such as progressive, is that predictive diallers use complex algorithms to calculate how many calls to make at any one given time to ensure that agents aren’t constantly waiting around for calls.

Why use a hosted dialler?

The most obvious reason for using a hosted dialler, such as the ones offered by Blue Telecoms, is cost. The initial outlay for an onsite dialler is usually in the range of £100,000! Even more if you opt for call technology such as ISDN.

In addition, it can take weeks to plan and install an onsite dialler, whereas as long as you have a stable internet connection at your office, a hosted dialler can be up and running in hours.

As far as maintenance and upgrades go, a hosted dialler wins there too. There’s usually no further costs for maintenance and upgrades to our hardware, and most of the software, whereas an onsite dialler would require a specialist to come out and perform the work, or to have a specialist member of staff, or even a team to carry out the tasks.

And, if you ever decide to expand, a hosted dialler can be expanded with usually no disruption to your call centre, and can be done almost as quickly as the initial setup, whenever you want.

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Hacked Jeep USB update criticised

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Fiat Chrysler has started distributing a software patch for millions of vehicles, via a USB stick sent in the post.

In July, two hackers revealed they had been able to take control of a Jeep Cherokee via its internet-connected entertainment system.

The car firm has been criticised by security experts who say posting a USB stick is “not a good idea”.

Fiat Chrysler has not yet commented to the BBC.

‘Fishing for victims’

“This is not a good idea. Now they’re out there, letters like this will be easy to imitate,” said Pete Bassill, chief executive of UK firm Hedgehog Security.

“Attackers could send out fake USB sticks and go fishing for victims. It’s the equivalent of email users clicking a malicious link or opening a bad attachment.

“There should be a method for validating the authenticity of the USB stick to verify it has really come from Fiat Chrysler before it is plugged in.”

He said that using a device like this had wider implications.

“Hackers will be able to pull the data off the USB stick and reverse-engineer it. They’ll get an insight into how these cars receive their software updates and may even find new vulnerabilities they can exploit,” he told the BBC.

In July, security researchers Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek demonstrated that it was possible for hackers to control a Jeep Cherokee remotely, using the car’s entertainment system which connected to the mobile data network.

The flaw affected up to 1.4 million vehicles sold in the US.

At the time, Fiat Chrysler issued a voluntary recall so that customers could visit a dealership to have the software updated in affected vehicles. It also made asoftware update available to download from its website for tech-savvy users.

Fiat Chrysler told technology magazine Wired: “Consumer safety and security is our highest priority. We are committed to improving from this experience and working with the industry and with suppliers to develop best practices to address these risks.”

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Hacking Drones

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Leaked emails between Italian spyware vendor Hacking Team and Boeing subsidiary Insitu revealed that drones carrying malware to infect targeted computers via Wi-Fi by flying over their proximity is close to becoming a reality.

Spyware-carrying drones were being discussed by Insitu, a division of Boeing and now-disgraced malware firm Hacking Team, according to leaked emails from the recent breach of the Italian company which have been posted on WikiLeaks, Engadget reported.

It was only the failure to come to terms over a non-disclosure agreement that kept Insitu and Hacking Team ‘teaming up’ together in order to create the malware infesting drone.

Early conversations took place regarding the inception and the possibility of a spy drone created by Boeing’s aircraft expertise, carrying malware that Hacking Team is notorious for. The concept was designing a drone capable of intercepting communications and hacking on-the-fly, via Wi-Fi. Discussions didn’t get far, however, when lawyers representing both companies couldn’t see eye-to-eye on a viable non-disclosure agreement.

The Talks Behind the Flying, Hacking Drone

Initial discussions kicked off when Giuseppe Venneri, a mechanical engineering graduate from UC and internee at Insitu took notice of Hacking Team’s “Galileo”, a piece of hardware otherwise known as the Tactical Network Injector. This is essentially designed to infiltrate networks and insert the malicious code via Wi-Fi networks to launch man-in-the-middle attacks and other exploits.

Venneri wrote to Emad Shehata, Hacking Team’s key account manager, stating:

We see potential in integrating your Wi-Fi hacking capability into an airborne system and would be interested in starting a conversation with one of your engineers to go over, in more depth, the payload capabilities including the detailed size, weight, and power specs of your Galileo System.

Shehata replied by sending in the standard Hacking Team NDA, to which Venneri responded with Boeing’s own PIA (Proprietary Information Agreement) which the intern noted “must be signed before we engage with potential partners.”

“Signing our PIA (attached) will dramatically shorten the authorization process at our end,” Venneri added. “Let me know if you are willing to sign our document to engage in conversations with us.”

It was at this point when Hacking Team’s Chief Operating Office Giancarlo Russo stepped into the conversation, taking the authority and stating: “I saw your document and it will require additional legal verification from our side regarding the applicability of ITAR and other U.S. Law,” he said. “In my opinion, for a preliminary discussion our non-disclosure agreement should be sufficient to protect both companies and as you will see it is including mutual provision for both parties and it will make things easier and faster for us.”

Venneri’s response was short and succinct: “If you are unable to review/sign our form, know it will take some time on our side to seek approval from our Boeing parent. Are you willing to consider our form?”

Communications went quiet for about a month after this exchange and Venneri sent in another email on 11 May 2015: “We corresponded with you about a month ago and were unsure about the progress going forward with preliminary discussions regarding any future collaborations. If you could please reconsider our mutual PIA, know that the questionnaire at the beginning of the document is just for gathering information and has no impact on the PIA itself. We have lots of Non-US companies under our PIA. If you or your legal team have any requested changes to our PIA please don’t hesitate to add them in the attached document.”

This was the last known correspondence taken from the leaks which came from the data breach two months later in July 2015. All NDAs are have been rendered obsolete and ineffective due to the Hacking Team hack.

Images from Wikimedia Commons and Shutterstock.

Original Source

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Critical Infrastructure at risk

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Critical infrastructure at risk from remotely exploitable NTP flaws

Remotely exploitable Network Time Protocol (NTP) vulnerabilities are leaving critical infrastructure firms open to attack, according to the Industrial Control Systems Computer Emergency Response Team (ICS-CERT).

ICS-CERT issued an advisory on the flaws, confirming it is working with over 20 vendors, including Google, to create fixes.

“As NTP is widely used within operational industrial control systems deployments, ICS-CERT is providing this information for US critical infrastructure asset owners and operators for awareness and to identify mitigations for affected devices,” read the advisory.

“These vulnerabilities could be exploited remotely.”

The multitude of flaws exist in all NTP Version 4 releases prior to Version 4.2.8p1 and are the result of “insufficient entropy”, the use of a cryptographically weak pseudorandom number generator (PRNG), a section of code without a return command and weak stack buffer, according to the ICS.

The emergency response team said it is yet to see any evidence any of the flaws are being exploited, but warned:

“An attacker with a low skill and an exploit script would be able to exploit these vulnerabilities. However, a higher-level of skill would be necessary to craft usable exploit scripts.”

It added that assessing the full scale of the flaws’ impact is difficult as it will depend on the individual company’s wider system.

“Impact to individual organisations depends on many factors that are unique to each organisation,” read the advisory.

“ICS-CERT recommends that organisations evaluate the impact of this vulnerability based on their operational environment, architecture, and product implementation.”

ICS-CERT recommends firms update to new unaffected NTP versions and take a variety of other protective measures.

“Minimise network exposure for all control system devices and/or systems, and ensure that they are not accessible from the internet,” read the advisory.

“Locate control system networks and remote devices behind firewalls, and isolate them from the business network.

“[Finally] when remote access is required, use secure methods, such as virtual private networks (VPNs).”

The ICS-CERT advisory follows widespread warnings that firms involved in critical infrastructure are dangerously vulnerable to cyber attacks.

US president Barack Obama pledged to bolster the nation’s cyber security and intelligence-gathering powers in a bid to protect critical infrastructure and industry from terrorists during his State of the Union speech in January.

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Hacker given in-game death sentence

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A character controlled by a hacker who used exploits to dominate online game Guild Wars 2 has been put to death in the virtual world.

The character, called DarkSide, was stripped then forced to leap to their death from a high bridge.

The death sentence was carried out after players gathered evidence about the trouble the hacker had caused.

This helped the game’s security staff find the player, take over their account and kill them off.

Death leap

Over the past three weeks many players of the popular multi-player game Guild Wars 2 have been complaining about the activities of a character called DarkSide. About four million copies of the game have been sold.

Via a series of exploits the character was able to teleport, deal massive damage, survive co-ordinated attacks by other players and dominate player-versus-player combat.

To spur Guild Wars’ creator ArenaNet to react, players gathered videos of DarkSide’s antics and posted them on YouTube.

The videos helped ArenaNet’s security head Chris Cleary identify the player behind DarkSide, he said in a forum post explaining what action it had taken. Mr Cleary took over the account to carry out the punishment.

The video shows DarkSide being stripped to his underwear then made to leap from a high bridge in one of the game’s cities. It also shows the character being deleted by Mr Cleary.

“Oh yah, he’s also banned,” he wrote. Several other accounts belonging to the same player have also been shut down.

ArenaNet did not reveal any information about how the player behind DarkSide had managed to exploit the game or whether the vulnerabilities used had been patched.

The punishment has sparked comment among Guild Wars players with some welcoming the action saying it felt like “justice”.

Others wondered what effect it would have and if it would deter anyone else from seeking out and using exploits in the same way.

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Dashcam footage accepted by insurers in disputed claims

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Most UK insurance companies will now accept dashboard camera footage in disputed claims – but few will offer a discount on premiums for using one.

These “dashcams” are small, forward-facing cameras that film a driver’s view of the road.

When asked by provider Nextbase, 29 insurers said they would consider using dashcam evidence in the claims process.

This would be put alongside any accounts from independent witnesses if the parties involved disagreed.

Experts also stress that drivers with dashcams should still collect as much evidence as possible in a claim when there is disagreement between the parties involved, such as the details of other motorists who may have seen the collision.

Discounts

Insurance premiums have been falling in recent months, according to various measures.

The AA said that the cheapest annual comprehensive car insurance on the market was £200 lower in the early months of 2015 than at its peak in 2011.

But the motoring group said it expected this average of the cheapest deals – £540 a year – to increase in the coming months.

Some drivers are able to secure a discount on their premium by installing a “black box” in their vehicle.

This records evidence, such as whether a driver is travelling within speed limits, and is aimed at encouraging safer use of the roads.

Malcolm Tarling, of the Association of British Insurers (ABI), said that it was far more likely for motorists to get a discount from their insurer when using a black box than when using a dashcam.

He added that insurers would generally have to write a clause into the terms and conditions of any discount to be able to demand dashcam footage be released by the owner, even if this implicated the driver as the cause of a collision.

Meanwhile, a price comparison website is warning drivers to ensure that any pets travelling in vehicles are secure.

“The law is clear – you must secure your animal while in a car,” said Matt Oliver, car insurance spokesman at Gocompare.com.

“Therefore if you don’t do this and an animal roaming freely around the vehicle is said to have contributed to causing an accident, then an insurance company could be well within their rights not to pay out on a claim.”

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Wake up, daddy’s looking for you’: Creepy hacker accesses baby monitor and speaks to frightened tot at night

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Mum and dad left distraught after sick hacker spied on their three-year-old through their baby monitor

 

A horrified couple have revealed how a sick hacker gained remote access to their baby monitor, then spied on their toddler son and spoke to him as he lay in his cot.

The child’s terrified parents only realised what was happening when they heard a stranger’s voice coming over the device saying : “Wake up little boy, daddy’s looking for you.”

The mother then broke down in tears as the penny dropped the monitor and its camera had been remotely hacked.

Her shocking discovery came after the three-year-old had been complaining that somebody was talking to him at night.

The parents, who want to remain anonymous for fear the hacker might track them down, thought it was down to the toddler’s overactive imagination until they heard the voice themselves.

The mum told CBS New York.: “I started to cry in there, because it all started coming back to me, and I started figuring things out.”

Technology experts are now warning parents that new baby monitors are at risk of hacking as many connect to the internet.

Worried mums and dads are being urged to change passwords and security settingsto make it harder for sinister strangers to infiltrate their child’s bedroom.

In a chilling warning Lance Ulanoff, chief correspondent for the digital media website Mashable, said when hackers succeed: “It’s basically like they’re standing next to you in your house.”

This is not the first time parents have found hackers remotely accessing baby monitors.

In November last year, hacked footage from baby monitors, webcams and CCTV systems in Britain were broadcast live by a Russian website.

And earlier this year a nanny described the terrifying moment she heard a stranger’s voice from her baby monitor calling the little girl “cute.

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