(also phreak, phone phreaking)
A manipulation of telephone signaling in order to make free phone calls. This was done by reverse engineering specific tones used by phone companies to determine where to send long-distance calls. “Phreaks“ (individuals who used this technique) were able to make international calls for free by mimicking those tones. The technique disappeared in 1983 when telephone companies separated signaling from the voice line.
Phreaking attacks use cases
- Getting free long-distance calls by using unauthorized access to phone networks.
- Integrating into computer networks without going through firewalls.
- Flooding phone networks with unauthorized calls to prohibit a business from accepting or making calls for hours.
- Listening to and forwarding voicemails to anyone, anywhere.
- Crashing phone systems.
- Corrupting programming databases of phone systems.