VoIP security tips for SMBs

SMBs are steadily transitioning from traditional phone services to VoIP solutions for team collaboration. Since VoIP threats don’t make headlines as often as cyberthreats like ransomware and phishing, not everyone knows how to combat them. Here are five tips to secure your company’s internet-based communication devices and services.

Since the majority of VoIP services involve live communications, people might think that it’s safer than stored data, which can be stolen at any time. What companies don’t realize is that valuable information moves across VoIP networks the same way sensitive documents are shared via email. In some cases, internet-based calls are more vulnerable to fraud, identity theft, eavesdropping, intentional disruption of service, and even financial loss.

24/7 monitoring

VoIP security breaches usually take place outside operating hours. Attackers make phone calls using private accounts or access call records with confidential information on the sly. Contracting outsourced IT vendors to monitor network traffic for any abnormalities is the best way to avoid these security breaches.

VoIP firewalls

Firewalls specifically designed for IP-based telephony curb the types of traffic that are allowed into your network. They ensure that every connection is properly terminated at the end of a session and identify suspicious calling patterns. Virtually every VoIP vendor provides these protocols, but you should always consult with your IT services provider as to how these protocols will be managed within your organization.

Encryption tools

Due to lack of encryption, VoIP systems can be easily broken into by even inexperienced hackers, who can download and deploy tools to eavesdrop or intercept your calls. Some services claim to have built-in encryption, but companies still need to be vigilant and investigate how effective they are.

Using encryption ensures that even if hackers successfully download individual audio or video, they still can’t decode the file unless they have a separate decryption key.

Virtual private network

Virtual private networks or VPNs create a secure connection between two points, as if they are occupying the same closed network. It’s like building a secret tunnel between you and the call receiver. Aside from encryption, establishing a VPN can help overcome complications involving Session Initiation Protocol trunking, a recommended VoIP feature.

Password protection

Using passwords to authenticate your access to private information is not as secure as it once was. Hackers can easily find or guess a password and use it for cyberattacks. This is why protecting the passwords themselves is a great layer of protection against threats.

Employees should be instructed never to give any compromising information during a VoIP call, as eavesdropping is one of the easiest and most common cyberattacks against VoIP networks.

VoIP is as important as any of your other network security considerations. It requires a unique combination of protection measures, and we’d love to give you advice on these. Give us a call today to get started.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

Why Cheap Routers/Firewalls Just Don’t Do The Trick

It is a misconception among many businesses that using a cheap, basic router/firewall is sufficient for day-to-day operations. But it is important to realize that there is more to it than just price – especially since more often than not, going cheap will only get you what you pay for (or maybe even less). In business, protecting important information and data is paramount. This is why it is recommended for any sort of business to invest in a security system that will prevent any cyber-attacks that might be launched against you. Unfortunately, though, it’s lost on many that a security system is not just made up of one single thing – software, better staff, better hardware, et cetera. A good and solid security system is composed of several factors working together to create a virtual chain that envelops your business and keeps it safe. And one of the most underestimated links in this chain is the router/firewall. Many businesses are content using the most basic and cheapest option available on the market, without realizing that their security chain is only as strong as its weakest link. And if you make do with a cheap router/firewall, odds are you’ll get what you pay for – not much. While basic routers might work fine for homes or individual users, it is a much different scenario when it comes to business operations where basic just doesn’t cut it. Plus, there’s more at stake with business data, so why take the risk with cheap routers that lack the proper security features? With viruses, malware, and the cyber thieves behind them continuing to grow and evolve, it is important that you understand what it takes to protect your system and your data – and invest in the best solution. Remember that it can take only one incident, one infiltration, to bring your whole business down. We realize that every system is different and every business has its own specific needs, so if you want to know more about getting the right router/firewall for you, please don’t hesitate to contact us.