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Microsoft Researchers Slash Skype Fraud By 68% 114

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the fraudsters-respond-with-fraud-bots dept.
mask.of.sanity writes "Life could become more difficult for fraudsters on Skype thanks to new research by Microsoft boffins that promises to cut down on fake accounts across the platform. The research (PDF) combined information from diverse sources including a user's profile, activities, and social connections into a supervised machine learning environment that could automate the presently manual tasks of fraud detection. The results show the framework boosted fraud detection rates for particular account types by 68 per cent with a 5 per cent false positive rate."
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Microsoft Researchers Slash Skype Fraud By 68%

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 20, 2014 @09:23PM (#46020143)

    absolutely not. 5% false positive is terrible, and will create a lot of negative feelings for the platform.
    imagine a teacher trying to use skype with a class of 20 or more. it would be very rare if someone
    didn't get falsely flagged as a bot.

  • BAD MATH! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by CapOblivious2010 (1731402) on Monday January 20, 2014 @09:31PM (#46020207)
    Improving detection by 68% != Reducing fraud by 68%

    Imagine that previous methods caught 10% of the fraudulent accounts. New tech improves that to 16.8%. It's a 68% improvement in the fraud detection rate, but only a 6.8% "slashing" of the fraudulent accounts.

    (And 5% false positives is pretty horrific)
  • by Jack Griffin (3459907) on Monday January 20, 2014 @09:41PM (#46020297)
    90% of my online accounts are fake, even this one. I create new accounts with new names to preserve my privacy, I have multiple hotmail, gmail and Facebook accounts specifically for this purpose. Sure the NSA types might see through this, but the average marketing agency won't. In real life, you can separate your worlds. My wife's circle of friends know me, but they don't know my friends, same goes for work 'mates', extended family etc. I have the power to keep things separate. It seems this choice is being slowly removed in online life as every web service demands you use your real name. Who wants to live in a world where everyone knows everything? We need a right to anonymity online.
  • Re:Lovely (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rmdingler (1955220) on Monday January 20, 2014 @10:04PM (#46020453)
    Don't fall for it. Growing up is a Pyrrhic Victory.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 20, 2014 @10:16PM (#46020535)

    Don't use British slang. TIA

  • by mcmonkey (96054) on Monday January 20, 2014 @11:14PM (#46020905) Homepage

    I've only used skype a few times. What is skype fraud?

    My understanding of skype is it's basically a video phone using your general purpose computer.

    I read some of TFA looking for what types of fraud they are talking about, but didn't see any detail. They mention credit card fraud, but that's not a feature of skype. I mean, if some stranger knocks on your door, and when you answer, asks for your credit card number, and you give your credit card number, that's not a weakness in your door or lock, that's a weakness in you.

    What I do with my landline is never answer if I don't recognize the number or name in the caller ID. Couldn't I do the same with skype, never answer if I don't know who is calling? There you go, 100% fraud prevention.

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