Voice over Internet Protocol, often shortened as VoIP, allows businesses and enterprises to make calls over broadband internet. The use of VoIP in business communication has accelerated in the recent past. Data from Statistica shows that VoIP business lines had jumped from 6.2 million in 2010 to 41.6 million in 2018. The advantages VoIP bring to the business, for example, cost-effectiveness, voice quality, and flexibility, are hard to ignore. However, VoIP has its downsides as well. Since VoIP relies on the internet, it can also be targeted by hackers and malicious actors. VoIP scams include Call ID spoofing and toll fraud. But these systems could also be attacked by Denial of Service (DoS), authentication attacks, Telephone Tampering, and eavesdropping. With attacks on VoIP systems rising, businesses need to stay aware to ensure their lines’ security. Here are four tips to help you secure your VoIP system.
1.Get a VoIP Firewall
Firewalls in VoIP systems can help bolster security. This security measure is mostly recommended to businesses with an on-premises VoIP system. Besides a firewall, you can also install an intrusion prevention system (IPS). Alternatively, both methods can be implemented simultaneously. A firewall will keep tabs on the traffic going through and outside the VoIP system and flag any suspicious activity. It will also ensure that calls are well terminated at the end of each calling session. You should consult with your VoIP provider to know which types of security solutions are available.
2. Enable Encryption
In case you already didn’t know, VoIP calls are transmitted over the internet without any encryption. That paves the way for malicious actors to tap those data packets and eavesdrop on your voice calls. But with encryption enabled, you’re confident that VoIP calls won’t be wiretapped. There are different techniques used in encrypting VoIP calls. Secure Real-time Transport Protocol (SRTP) is an excellent example of encryption techniques to help secure your calls while in transmission. Consult with your VoIP vendor for more information on the same.
3. Use Strong Passwords
Security advocates can’t emphasize enough the importance of robust, unique passwords. With data breaches topping news headlines now and then, having a strong password on any service is essential. For VoIP, start by changing the default admin password to a unique and strong one; default passwords are often listed on the internet. Secondly, ensure the voicemail password is also strong and unique, and both of these should be changed regularly. Having a robust password policy is equally important. Critical aspects of a strong password include length, alphanumeric numbers and letters, symbols, and should not take a clue from personal information. Creating a strong password is a no-brainer these days, thanks to the ubiquitous internet-based services called password generators and password managers. You can use a password generator to create a unique and robust password and store it in a password management service like LastPass, 1Password, and Dashlane to name a few.
4. Consider using a VPN
With a VPN service, your VoIP call traffic will be encrypted to prevent hackers from wiretapping. An attacker using a network analyzer won’t be able to wiretap your traffic if you’re using a VPN.
Furthermore, VPNs scramble the data while in transmission, so even if it falls in the hands of a malicious individual, they won’t be able to read it.
With its advantages, VoIP systems have their downsides. Hackers can leverage the most common internet-based attack techniques to hack VoIP systems, and having robust security policies as outlined above can help ensure data privacy. You will have to contact your VoIP provider to implement some security techniques, like firewall, VPN, and encryption. Most VoIP providers have built-in security protocols that you may not know about yet. So, give them a call today and inquire about the same.