Las Vegas whoremongers claim the conspiracy goes something like this:

Outcall prostitution clearly thrives on the Las Vegas Strip, despite being illegal in that part of Nevada. Johns staying at Vegas hotels frequently call local escort services for one or more whores to visit them right in their room. However, many of the flesh brokers accuse their competitors of hiring phone phreaks to rig the city's telephone system to reroute the john's telephone call to an entirely different outcall "agency" than the one that the john actually dialed. Some pimps even allege that the sabotage is so sophisticated that only calls from certain hotels are hijacked, making it very difficult for the telco to confirm, since the telco's test calls always make it through to the right number. It is also believed that, in some cases, the rerouting is only enabled at certain times, like when business would normally be very active.

The pimps' problem is that no matter how reasonable their rates are, no matter how pretty their girls are, no matter how many transients they pay to shove a full-color, 19-page dial-a-whore catalog into the hands of every male on the Strip, it simply doesn't matter if someone or something is redirecting their incoming calls to a competing outfit.

Unfortunately, these accusations are hard to prove or disprove. After all, the john doesn't know and doesn't care that his call went to a different firm. Sometimes, the call is simply eavesdropped instead of being rerouted, so the "right" pimp gets the john's call, but the rogue pimp tapping the line sends one of his girls there first. It's also possible for hotel insiders working on referral commissions to tip off rival pimps when their guests are detected calling any outcall number at all.

When a pimp's phone doesn't ring once all night in the middle of COMDEX, he's bound to suspect sabotage and want some form of revenge. Add the fact that prostitution and the mafia go together like peas and carrots, and an unproven, convoluted conspiracy about PBX-twiddling phone phreaks could very well escalate into a bloody gang war.

The telco claims this kind of wholesale sabotage can't happen on their switches, but anyone who's ever heard of Kevin Mitnick could easily believe otherwise. Sure enough, when one of the complaints against the telco made it to a hearing of the Nevada Public Utility Commission, the victim hired the recently paroled Mitnick to testify, revealing various and sundry vulnerabilites of the Las Vegas area telephone system. In Munoz v. Central Telephone Company - Nevada d/b/a/ Sprint of Nevada, local outcall business owner Eddie Munoz hired Mitnick in 2001 as a technical consultant and expert witness, but nearly lost him as a resource when he fell behind paying Mitnick's consulting fees.

Munoz eventually reconciled with Mitnick in the summer of 2002, in time to secure crucial testimony from Mitnick that Sprint's Northern Telecom DMS-100 switches could be easily compromised, contrary to the vehement claims of Sprint's expert witness, Larry Hill. Given the lack of evidence of any sabotage committed specifically against the plaintiff, Munoz's only hope was to convince the commission that Sprint's switches were so insecure that committing such sabotage would have been a trivial task. In the bizarro universe of the hearing, Mitnick was testifying that he had indeed hacked Sprint's DMS-100 switches back in the 1990s, and Sprint was calling him a liar. When pressed for proof by Sprint's attorney, Mitnick asked for a short recess, and returned a couple hours later with a crumpled list of DMS-100 security codes he'd kept in a Vegas area locker for over seven years.

After an uncharacteristically long hearing for a utility commission complaint, Munoz ultimately lost his case, but vowed to appeal in federal court.

Reference: Poulsen, Kevin. "Nevada probes Vegas phone hacks" SecurityFocus 14 May 2001: n. pag. Web. 12 May 2011.

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