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Article : Take Security Seriously When Getting Back to Work

#contactcenterworld, @eckoh

Author: Claire Lynam, Marketing Manager, Eckoh

We all had to adapt quickly when the Coronavirus Pandemic took hold, which may have meant some organisations took short-cuts with security, suggests Eckoh, the contact centre security specialist who has helped a number of its clients to securely operate their contact centres from home.

The company is calling on UK organisations to take time to ensure their remote and home workers can offer the same levels of data and payment card security as their office-based contact centre, to ensure customers’ data is protected and the organisation is compliant. As the lockdown eases Eckoh is advising organisations to take a medium to longer-term view on how a remote or home-working contact centre can be set up to work alongside an office-based one to accommodate the ‘new normal’ where working practices may be very different.

"Criminals are opportunistic and have already seen this crisis as an opportunity for fraud," says Nik Philpot, Eckoh’s CEO. "They might use anything from phishing attacks via email, infiltrating organisations with planted employees, to obtaining card numbers that are read aloud or scribbled down on paper. People's homes aren't always secure spaces and mistakes can happen easily too. It's an uncomfortable reality."

To eliminate these risks, Eckoh is recommending solutions for handling customer card payments — one that prevents agents from seeing, hearing or recording card details.

Eckoh is also encouraging companies to go a step further and offer more empathetic services to their customers via Chat and Chatbot technology, where PCI compliant, secure payments can be made within the Chat or Chatbot window. This is a big helping hand for remote or on-premise contact centres who are trying to handle an increasing number of customer enquiries. Having a Chatbot that can take secure payments also means that organisations can be available to customers 24x7 and for those who prefer to self-serve.

"It's another good example of how brands can be more supportive of customers at this time without compromising security. In the understandable rush to maintain customer service, it's essential that organisations get it right — even if that takes a few extra days. Customers need trust and confidence, now more than ever." says Nik.

The background story: How secure are home-working contact centre agents?

The Coronavirus has presented huge challenges for organisations. Some have closed their contact centres — mindful of a potential backlash of negative comments1 from customers who can no longer talk to someone about an order, booking or complex enquiry.

Other organisations tried to maintain business continuity by mobilising their workforce to work from home. But in the rush to ensure business continuity and good customer service, Eckoh is questioning whether adequate security measures are in place to ensure customers' personal details are safe.

Gartner reports that globally some two million customer service agents are now working from home, and this number has undoubtedly increased massively during the current crisis. But cyber-criminals are taking advantage of organisations’ weakened state by targeting them. In April 2020 alone, there were 49 data breach incidents globally, with a total of 216,141,421 affected records2.

While speed has been of the essence in getting contact centre agents to work home, Eckoh's concern is that organisations may have cut corners by opting for the cheapest or fastest route.

"In an office environment, contact centre agents are governed by internal policies, processes, procedures and security access. But what happens in the home environment? How do you keep sensitive details private?" says Nik.

The last thing a customer wants is to be relaying payment card information over the phone to someone who is not in a secure, controlled environment using a secure payment tool. Similarly, it's a big ask to make agents responsible for streams of sensitive card data coming their way, when they're not security experts.

Finding the right answers

"In any engagement, the point where payment card details are given out is the most vulnerable to attack, so this area needs to be locked down fast and effectively. This is the reason data security standards like GDPR and the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) exist.

"Compliance and security do not pause for a crisis, and if anything, they need to be more rigorously upheld as customer service becomes more dispersed. Fortunately, technology exists to make this possible, acting as a shield around the home-worker as it did for the contact centre employee," says Nik. "This may take a little more time than some other solutions promise, but the peace of mind in having a water-tight security system will be time and money well spent in the long-term — and you’ll maintain customer confidence."

Eckoh’s recommended approach is to remove the risk of fraud by preventing sensitive data from entering the contact centre environment, something that can be replicated for the home-working environment. Put simply, the technology sits between the customer and the agent, preventing sensitive payment details from ever entering the agent's home environment, but still allowing the communication between the two to continue uninterrupted and for the payment to be concluded successfully. As a result, it removes the whole environment from the scope of PCI DSS.

As an effective interim measure, a similar solution can be used that removes just the agent, their screen, and any call recordings from the scope of PCI DSS. This simpler approach allows the customer to effectively type their own payment information into the agent’s payment screen, using a patented process, but with the details being shielded from view of the agent. It’s simple, but highly effective.

Whichever new working practices organisations adopt, security should remain at the heart of the operation, ensuring the business, the customers’ data and the contact centre agents are protected, secure and compliant.

#contactcenterworld, @eckoh

About Eckoh:
Company LogoEckoh is a global provider of Secure Payment and Customer Engagement solutions via our Eckoh Experience Portal. We’ve an international client base and offices in the UK and US. We're providers in transforming contact centre operations by delivering customer experiences across every channel, boosting agent productivity, reducing operations costs and maximising payment security. We’ve over 20 years’ experience in contact centre technology solutions. Eckoh has been a PCI DSS Level One Service Provider since 2010.
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Today's Tip of the Day - Make Self Service A Breeze

Read today's tip or listen to it on podcast.

Published: Friday, June 12, 2020

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2024 Buyers Guide Computer Telephony Integration

Premium Listing
Call Center Studio

Call Center Studio
Call Center Studio is the world’s first call center built on Google and is one of the most secure and stable systems with some of the industry’s best reporting. It is one of the most full-featured enterprise grade systems (with the most calling features, one of the best call distribution, outbound dialing features and integrations—including IVR, AI Speech Recognition, blended inbound/outbound calling and includes Google’s new Dialogflow and Speech API. Call Center Studio is the absolute easiest to use (with a 10 minute setup), and is the price performance leader with lower equipment cost and less setup time.

AMC Technology

DaVinci provides Computer Telephony Integration (CTI) to a library of pre-built applications + UXiPaaS (User Experience Integration Platform as a Service) built specifically for contact centers. As contact center needs evolve, organizations need to have access to extend or create new functionality, without waiting to be a part of a software roadmap. Get the benefits of CTI within your CRM like screen pop, click-to-dial, screen transfer, speed dial and more, but future-proof your contact center so you can expand and integrate how and when you want.

IntraNext Systems

IntraNext Systems develops agent efficiency tools and data security software solutions for medium-to-large contact centers. Our Event Intelligence® Platform solutions include SmartCTI™, iGuard®, and SmartSIP™. SmartSIP is based on our patented SIP layer technology and provides a DTMF masking solution for VoIP environments.


What is PhoneIQ?
PhoneIQ is the modern cloud phone system and contact center platform built exclusively for companies on Salesforce. Our all-in-one cloud communications platform brings together power dialing, local presence, voicemail drop, Salesforce call routing, call recording and a complete PBX replacement that lives within your CRM. With support for desktop, mobile, and desk phones, PhoneIQ works seamlessly at the office or remote, logging all interactions in Salesforce and generating reports in real-time.

Best For
Companies using Salesforce and looking for a phone system, dialer, or contact center software that provides deep integration capabilities with their CRM and expert Salesforce support.


Easy Contact Center Traffic Analytics (Ec2Traffic)
Prilink Ec2Traffic provides network traffic analytics (NTA) for Internet, SIP Trunk and WebRTC traffic for on-premises and cloud Contact Centers.

Ec2Traffic analyzes network layer 2 to 4, RTP and SRTP packet loss and SIP protocols in real-time from the demarcation point or network edge, generating NTA metadata and requires little telemetry bandwidth.

Ec2Traffic provides:

- Year-round NTA metadata

- Daily CSV files upload to Customer business applications

- Capture packet to Wireshark for Deep Packet Inspection (DPI)

- detect traffic anomalies

- and more ....

The Primas Group

Primas CX
Primas CX is a CTI-based contact center enhancement suite that takes your contact center software to the next level.
It provides a set of tools that every contact center needs, over and above their vendor features.

*Advanced Call Back in Queue & SMS in Queue
*Agent Screen Pop
*Chatbot Automation
*Welcome Back Greeting
*Post Contact Survey
*Dropped Call Reconnect
*Digital Front Door & Many more

As a Vendor Agnostic ISV, we pride ourselves on delivering the best COTS & Custom solutions for any contact center in any industry.


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