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Why VoIP needs encryption.

by | Apr 9, 2019 | Uncategorised

Why VoIP needs encryption.

VoIP is becoming of interest to an increasing number of businesses. It’s convenient, it’s relatively cheap, and it offers plenty of solutions.

But is it secure enough? A focus on cyber security is essential for businesses these days as the consequences of cyber-crime can be catastrophic – in fact, cyber-crime is predicted to cost businesses around $6 trillion around the globe by 2021.

Many of the attacks are fundamentally the same, and savvy businesses are well prepared through their IT professionals. But what businesses often forget is how telecoms fit into their security strategy – and that it’s just as susceptible to hacking as anything else so protection is essential.

Traditionally, businesses have been using ISDN for their telephony services – which allows both voice and data services to be delivered simultaneously over digital lines. However, this is being phased out for more modern alternatives, and yet it remains an extremely secure telephony method, with very little opportunity for hacking.

Nevertheless, major telephony companies are moving away from ISDN. BT, for example, is planning to switch off ISDN entirely by 2025, moving businesses onto VoIP networks instead, and eventually rendering ISDN obsolete. And whilst VoIP might be a sensible choice today and for the future, it does come with heightened security risks.

The problem is that just like other IP-based communications including email, VoIP can be exploited by hackers. And we, the users, tend not to think about how our information in emails or on Skype, for example, is being transmitted – and therefore how it could be intercepted. So really, businesses should protect these packets of information just as much, and in the same detail, as they protect those transmitting on the rest of their IT infrastructure.

At the very least, heightened security for IP-based communications could save a business from spiteful hacking or attacks designed to embarrass, and at most could protect a business from considerable financial loss.

The introduction of General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has also focused the minds of businesses to think more seriously than ever about how they are protecting any personally identifiable data they have on file.

So, how can businesses make sure that they get the benefits of using VoIP and remain secure?

The answer is encryption. Encryption makes it far more difficult for hackers to capture the data packets being transported across VoIP. It can protect against data breaches and hide phone systems from hackers making it far harder for them to steal data or carry out fraudulent activity.

Encryption hasn’t always been necessary among telecoms communications. But if businesses are aware of the threat to data security inherent in IP-based communications, and the consequent need for encryption, there’s no reason why they shouldn’t enjoy the benefits of VoIP, securely.


Rapid IT Reponse is a specialist IT Company based in Stockport near Manchester

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