colin yates

Colin Yates, Founder and Director, Yates Fraud Consulting Limited.

Colin is a telecommunications professional with over 30 years' experience, specifically in the area of fraud, investigations, Revenue Assurance and threat management. Colin specializes in the areas of Telecoms Fraud (Internal and External) and Investigations.  He also has considerable experience with Personnel and Physical Security, Law Enforcement Agency Liaison, Intelligence Management, Regulatory Compliance, Revenue Assurance and Policy development.

Colin's experience in managing fraud, revenue risk and investigations in the telecoms industry began firstly in Telecom New Zealand where he spent 11 years, and then on to Vodafone for another 12 years, where, for the last 6 years of his time with them, he was Head of Fraud Management and Investigations for Vodafone Group based in the UK. There he was responsible for developing and implementing an effective and consistent fraud management and investigation strategy across Vodafone's global footprint.

A key activity of this role was to analyse quarterly fraud loss figures from each of the Vodafone operating companies to identify improvement opportunities for any local markets who were failing to meet the fraud loss benchmark. He also ensured that any initiatives implemented in other markets that were reducing fraud were captured as best practice and rolled out to all operating companies.

In the 9 years since starting his consultancy, Colin has been contracted by a number of smaller to medium Fixed, MNO’s and MVNO’s within Europe, Eastern Europe and Asia Pacific to perform Fraud and Revenue Risk reviews, and provide recommendations to raise their Fraud and Revenue Risk Management capabilities to a level accepted as industry best practice. These reviews have resulted in significant cost savings and operational improvements for the operators he has consulted with. 

Colin moved to the Telecommunications Fraud, Risk and Security industry following an 18 year career in the New Zealand Police, where he held various operational and management roles.

Qualifications and Expertise:

  • Admitted as a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners in 1996
  • Chairman of the Forum of International Irregular Network Access (FIINA) 1998 - 2001
  • Executive Member and Chairman of Intelligence Committee of FIINA 2001 - 2004
  • Deputy Chair of GSM Fraud Forum (GSMFF) 2008-2012
  • Chairman of the GSM Fraud Forum (GSMFF) Intelligence Committee 2001 - 2003, 2005 to 2011
  • Chairman of the GSM Asia Pacific Fraud Forum (GSMAPFF) 2002 - 2005
  • Director/Secretary of the Communications Fraud Control Association (CFCA) 1998 - 2002
  • Chairman of Pacific Partners Fraud Forum (PPM) 1997 – 2001
  • Director & Chairman of Intelligence Committee of Australasian Telecommunications Fraud and Risk Association (ATFRA) 2004 to 2005
  • Member of New York Electronic Crimes Task Force (NYECTF) 2000 – 2005
  • Member of the National Cyber-Forensics Training Alliance (NCFTA) (USA) 2008 – 2014
  • Member of the New York/New Jersey Cyber Fraud Tast Force (CFTF) (USA) 2015 to present
  • Speaker at over 50 local and international fraud conferences on telecom fraud and threat management.
  • 2004, selected as a Vodafone Pacific Legend - one of 24 selected from almost 200 nominations for those showing commitment to the 4 Vodafone global Passions.
  • 2005, received a GSMA award to recognise contribution to re-establishing the GSM Asia Pacific Fraud Forum, and also personal efforts made to remove International Revenue Share Fraud out of the Pacific.
  • 2010, selected as a recipient of the Vodafone Group 'Hero' award, a Global Recognition programme recognising consistently high performing staff - one of 20 employees selected from a staff of 1500.
  • 2014 - Appointed to the judging panel for the GSMA Global Mobile Awards in the User Identity Safeguard and Security Products/Solutions section. Reappointed as Judge for the 2015 GSMA Awards and the 2016 GLOMO awards.
  • 2014 – Appointed to the GSMA Fraud and Security Group (FASG) Advisory Panel (Resigned 2016)
  • Currently Adviser to the Pacific Islands Telecommunications Association (PITA), providing assistance to the PITA Operator members to manage their fraud and revenue risk
  • Participating as an adviser to the ITU Study Group 2 on numbering, specifically as this relates to Number Misappropriation (Hijacking) and the use of these numbers for International Revenue Share Fraud.
  • Providing advice and assistance to Europol and other global Law Enforcement Agencies to assist their investigations, and increase their awareness, of International Revenue Share Fraud and it's enablers.
  • Inducted in to the Risk Assurance Group (RAG) Hall of Fame for 'Outstanding Lifetime Contribution to the Communications Risk Community.

In 2012/13 Colin researched the use of Test Numbers being used prior to an International Revenue Share Fraud attack and developed a database of known Test Numbers in use, which is called PRISM. PRISM has grown from 17,000 numbers in 2013 to over 7 million numbers as at January 2022.  This database and has proven itself as a key defense against IRSF for it's many operator members. (See PRISM TAB for more information)

gsma global mobile awards judge 2014
Certified Fraud Examiner
PITA Pacific Islands Telecommunications Association