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Aussie Telcos Prepare Multi-Factor Authentication

The ACMA’s new customer verification rules come into force on June 30, with mobile carriers preparing customers for the switch to multi-factor authentication.

The new rules come after a spate of ‘SIM swap’ attacks, where scammers are able to take control of a user’s device.

“We’re going the extra mile to make sure your Optus account is more secure than ever before,” Optus explains on its customer support page.

“That’s why we’re introducing multi-factor authentication, so you can continue to enjoy the same peace of mind you can always expect from us when it comes to the safety of your personal information.”

Telstra said: “We are making some changes to how customers can get assistance to reset their passwords.

“We are also expanding two-step verification across more of our channels and transactions to ensure we’re talking only to our customers.”

Chair of the ACMA’s Scam Taskforce Fiona Cameron said, under the new rules, the ACMA will have a range of enforcement actions available for telcos found to have breached the new rules, including commencing court proceedings.

“SIM-swap scams can cause a lot of harm as scammers take control of your phone number and then use that to gain access to your online banking accounts,” Cameron said.

“These new rules require multi-factor authentication of your identity such as confirming personal information and responding with a one-time code consistent with how other essential services like banking operate.

“We expect these rules will go a long way to stamping out unauthorised transactions like SIM-swap fraud and improve safeguards for telco customers.”

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