Ankit Dudhwewala

What are the major concerns of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and how cyber security is dealing with it? – Times of India


Uday Deb

The growing digitisation across industry sectors has changed the way how we communicate. Technological interventions and the evolution of 5G or the fifth generation of mobile technologies have further led to a shift toward advanced communication techniques. Unlike in earlier times, businesses across the world are dumping the traditional telephone networks and switching over to cloud-based phone systems or Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology.

Some noticeable advantages that VoIP provides over typical phone infrastructures are significant cost reductions, a centralised system, and stronger connectivity. It is a dynamic and flexible offering that caters to hybrid working. However, despite its advanced features and an edge over traditional handsets, VoIP is vulnerable to cyber-attacks and therefore, needs to be protected.

Cybersecurity risks that businesses using VoIP face

Since VoIP networks are much more connected to the internet than traditional phone services, they are more open to attack. Here are some major cybersecurity risks that businesses using VoIP face:

· Viruses and malware: It is difficult for any new technology to escape viruses and malware and VoIP is no different. Your VoIP network is also exposed to malware and viruses just like other internet applications. This malware and viruses might perform any number of unwanted system interruptions.

· Denial of Service (DoS) attacks: Although DoS attacks don’t require much sophistication, they are one of the biggest concerns as they are very low-cost to operate. Basically, the implementation of VoIP can leave your Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and User Datagram Protocol (UDP) ports at risk. If you ignore this risk, then these ports can be used as part of a distributed DoD attack.

· Phishing: VoIPs are often targeted by phishing or ‘Vishing’ scams. Scammers may contact users on numbers like those of a legitimate organisation and the victim is swiftly taken onto a separate call, where they are asked to verify their identity and hand over confidential details.

· Call tampering: Hackers may disrupt your live calls, making VoIP systems vulnerable to call tampering. The effects of tampering can be seen in the form of poor call quality or long delays and periods of silence while hackers try to share substantial amounts of data over the line.

How cyber security can help businesses deal with these VoIP issues

While a VoIP phone system is already a significant security upgrade to a traditional communication system, here are some ways to make it even more secure:

· Encryption: It can protect your data even further as even if it is intercepted or targeted by hackers, they may not be able to leak any valuable information as it will be too difficult to decode.

· Use a VPN: A Virtual Private Network is a great way of securing the data that your business is transmitting over the internet. A VPN basically acts as an internal network, as it creates its own private network over which data can be safely and securely sent.

· Network tests: Another way to make a VoIP system more secure is by carrying out regular penetration tests and assessments. In this way, you can make sure that your network is safe against hacks by running simulations within your team.

Security is an essential asset for any business, so it is important for you not to bury your head in sand. As an entrepreneur or stakeholder in a business, you should make sure that comprehensive security measures are in place. That is where VoIP security comes in and it can help in ensuring that all calls are secure whether it is in the office or off-site.



Views expressed above are the author’s own.



Views expressed above are the author’s own.



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