Securing a VoIP Network

Joel Goldstein - Monday, March 30, 2015

 

As VoIP is gaining more popularity, and as more enterprises are switching to it, security of a VoIP network is becoming a topic that we need to consider more. For starters, the threats that plague a data network also threaten a VoIP network. And any safeguards we apply to a data network we also need to apply to a VoIP network.

The security of a VoIP network needs the collaboration of the customer and the VoIP provider. There are many things the provider has to implement and several things that the client, or end user, needs to be aware of.
 
The provider has to make sure that the VoIP network is always available. An attacker can flood the network with millions of fake packets, and when the server cannot differentiate between legitimate packets and fake packets, the network can crawl to a halt. Although there is not one solution to this problem, the provider has several technologies, from firewalls to deep scanning IPS/IDS’s to assist him, each tailored to the network’s needs.

The users of a VoIP network also need to be aware of how unscrupulous people can gain access to their network. Using fake caller ids, or spoofing, someone with bad intentions can gain the trust of an employee, and thus luring that employee to disclose sensitive information. Being aware of ‘phishing’ attacks is the strongest defense against it.

Keeping all the VoIP phones up to date with their latest security patches is also recommended. It sounds easier than it is done, but it is worth the extra effort.

Toll fraud, getting access to premium long distance calls without paying, is a concern to everyone who deploys a VoIP network. Using best practices can mitigate this threat, and monitoring all call behavior for fraudulent patterns is a step in the right direction.

When signing up new clients, TeleGo, or any other decent VoIP provider, will discuss the client’s security concerns. Each client is unique, and his or her network security needs a tailored approach.

It is recommended to get security integrated into the network right from the beginning before deployment starts.

As VoIP is becoming a strong force in the enterprise, it becomes more lucrative for the hacker who seeks to exploit it. Therefore, security should never be taken for granted. By keeping one step ahead of the game, TeleGo ensures that its clients have an enjoyable and safe voice experience.
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