Any contact center manager considering a new cloud communications solution needs to do their “due diligence” before choosing a provider, including those in small to medium enterprises. The stakes are high for SMEs because your needs are unique and there are significant differences in the available providers. Your decision not only affects your organization’s budget, but also its business processes, customer experiences, and agent work environment.
Proxy phone numbers are used to mask real phone numbers to enhance security for both customers and service providers.
Generally, businesses communicate with customers via phone calls or text messages. If you order pizza, a courier will call/text to verify the delivery address. Taxi drivers will call/text to specify a pick-up address when they can't find you.
Using personal phone numbers poses potential risks for both conversation parties. For instance, the customer’s and service provider’s phone numbers may go to spam databases, which would result in robocalls or calls from suspicious numbers.
In order to maintain your brand image and protect the personal data of customers from fraudsters, businesses replace real numbers of customers and employees with proxy numbers.
What is a Proxy Number?
A proxy number is a cloud-based feature that connects conversation parties without revealing their real phone numbers. The caller dials a proxy number which shows up on the recipient’s end as a temporary number, hence the term phone number masking.
Implementation of proxy numbers doesn’t require any hardware installation. Backend operations are performed on the server-side while you manage and track calls in your account.
Proxy numbers facilitate secure and direct communication between two parties and enable companies to have an extra level of security for their customers and employees.
How do Proxy Numbers Work?
Proxy services mask real numbers using an intermediary cloud server. When you call a taxi driver using a virtual number, your call reroutes through the cloud. An API helps to switch calls from the real number to the proxy number and vice versa.
Once you receive a proxy number, you can use it to connect with a service. Then, the cloud server connects endpoints and acts as a bridge between them. To make it easier to understand how the proxy service works, take a look at this scheme below.
Let's say Bob orders a taxi. He’s looking for a cab and calls a driver using his taxi app.
- Bob calls a driver’s phone number displayed on the app as 111
- Voximplant receives a call and requests a driver’s number from the service
- Voximplant forwards the call to the driver’s real number, 222
- When the driver’s phone rings, he also sees Bob’s number as 111 even though Bob’s real number is 333
- The client and the driver are connected but neither’s real phone number is revealed
If they get disconnected, they can use this proxy number to call back. The proxy phone number feature is scalable for any number of drivers and customers.
How Can Proxy Numbers Help Your Business?
No matter what business industry you represent, trust is essential between your brand and customers. Besides customer loyalty, proxy numbers can bring you additional benefits such as:
- Data security: Ensure the complete privacy of your customers by facilitating them to connect without revealing personal numbers
- On-platform transactions: Avoid off-platform transactions and prevent revenue leakage by keeping the identities of buyers and sellers private
- Call routing: If a customer has already used your service, Voximplant will automatically transfer the incoming call to the correct agent based on the customer's input
- Tracking and monitoring: Using proxy numbers allow you to record and transcribe calls so that you can analyze business communications and improve your customer experience
- Various calling options: Call over the phone network, embedded VoIP calling in mobile apps, or on any webpage using a proxy number
- Combined features: Combine the proxy number feature with other solutions such as prompts, smart IVR, or even interactive bots
Industries That Benefit Most From Proxy Numbers
See how leading companies in various industries use proxy phone numbers to enhance their customer service.
Secure communications between taxi drivers and customers is a crucial requirement for the taxi market. You don’t want a driver to annoy you with phone calls or texts after the service has been provided. Such a situation can make a customer feel harassed or unsafe and switch to another service. Instead of giving out their real phone numbers, cab aggregators use a proxy.
Uber and Lyft mask the real phone numbers of customers and drivers using a proxy service. This ensures that drivers and customers are still able to communicate regarding ride issues such as items left behind in a cab, but without revealing their real phone numbers.
The e-commerce industry sets new records in revenue each year. According to ACI Worldwide Research, global e-commerce retail sales had achieved 209% year-over-year revenue growth. This makes e-commerce attractive for scammers and cybercriminals. One of the most widespread e-commerce frauds is account takeover that occurs when customers’ personal data from online shops is leaked
Thus, online shops need to be able to mask the real phone numbers of customers and employees to not only avoid off-platform transactions but also to prevent data leakage and scams that harm the brand image.
Companies providing delivery services use proxy numbers to track conversations between couriers and customers. All interactions are performed through a proxy number that eliminates the possibility of false delivery updates from the courier and helps businesses monitor the ratio of on-time to late deliveries.
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