Sunday, 7 August 2016

How to display a different number when you make calls

This is otherwise known as spoofing and it is found to be surprisingly easier to do than how it sounds.

In the past, phone hackers trying to mask a phone number behind someone else's used fairly complex hardware called "orange boxes," but now anyone can use simple solutions like Spoofcard, which allows users to purchase credits towards call time used in a simple smartphone app.

With Spoofcard, users input the number they want to call, and what number they want displayed on the other end — initiating an untraceable call that leaves the other person only seeing the spoofed caller ID. 

For a hacker trying to gain access to someone's online accounts, spoofing the call number is just step one in a social engineering play to convince a customer service representative they are legitimate. 
Surprisingly, spoofing phone numbers isn't necessarily illegal — though the test example from Clark certainly would be. The FCC only prohibits someone from using a misleading caller ID number if their intent is to defraud, cause harm, or obtain anything of value. That means someone who wants to maintain their privacy or prank call a friend would be in the clear.

But there is plenty of misuse in the world of spoofing. The tactic has been used in the past by "swatters" who call police to report hostage crisis hoaxes, so armed police respond at an unsuspecting victim's door. It's even been used to break into people's voicemail boxes, which often do not require a password if called from the phone number associated with it.

While Spoofcard may be easy to use, the service told The Wall Street Journal in 2010 it frowned upon illegal usage and often complied with law enforcement requests, including subpoenas from the NSA. The company told Tech Insider that in cases where it's being used for illegal activity, "we can close accounts if they are found to be in violation of our terms of service."

It is however advised to be used at users' discretion and legimately.