Many companies have switched over to a VoIP telephone system for several good reasons. Its cost-efficiency, flexibility, availability of business features, and practicality have driven companies of all sizes to shift to this new communication platform. But these advantages have also prompted questions about security, particularly about VoIP Providers in the UK keeping essential and confidential data safe.
According to the National Cyber Security Centre, VoIP is now one of the systems that cybercriminals often target. Lawful interception and business practice monitoring are some of the best defences for a secure voice technology system, but these are often overlooked because companies want to preserve the privacy of information by limiting third parties such as human intelligence sources to access their data.
While VoIP systems have many distinct advantages over traditional communication platforms, users must still be aware of the common data security threats that can affect these systems.
What Are the Common Threats to VoIP Telephone System?
There has been an increased demand for VoIP services in the market, but unfortunately, this has also led to an increase in the number of unscrupulous groups who seek to exploit VoIP providers and users. The use of the internet to access VoIP features makes it vulnerable to security breaches which can harm companies.
Up to 88% of UK companies have suffered breaches in the past 12 months. Judging from this, we can say that VoIP security may be susceptible to external threats. Internet safety is a significant concern for web-based telephony systems, especially given the severity of problems that can impact a company’s data security and privacy.
There are several common threats that VoIP users should be aware of:
- Identity and service theft
Identity theft is the deliberate use of someone else’s personal information to gain financial or other benefits in the other person’s name, often to the other person’s disadvantage. Service theft occurs when cyber hackers use a company’s private information to fraudulently offer services.
By tapping into a weakly-guarded VoIP system, hackers can access confidential information through services such as voicemail. They can even make changes to your system like changing a call forwarding number.
Identity and service theft most commonly occur through voice and email phishing, card skimming, and phone scams.
VoIP security systems can be vulnerable to eavesdropping attacks, also known as sniffing or snooping attacks. Criminals steal sensitive information such as financial and business records by interrupting the transmission of data over a network.
These attacks take advantage of unsecured network communications to access data while it is being sent or received. An eavesdropping attack can be difficult to detect because network transmissions appear to be operating normally.
- Malicious software threats
Malware is a common security threat that can be caused by viruses, trojans, adware, and spyware. These threats are so prevalent because even something as innocuous as clicking a link can cause malware to be downloaded onto your device. Hackers can also spread malware by disguising them as free files or software for download.
The most common effect of malicious software threats is ransomware, where hackers demand payment in exchange for “unlocking” your device or files. This type of threat is particularly vicious because they can threaten to expose your information or destroy your data if you do not give in to their demands.
- Call tampering
VoIP security protocols can also be vulnerable to call tampering, where a virus or malicious application can take control of mobile hardware or software. The goal is to interrupt an ongoing call and listen in to the conversation.
Hackers have also been known to intercept calls and impersonate unsuspecting individuals. By doing so, they can gather personal information and use it for financial gain.
VoIP users need to understand these threats so they can be aware of the potential risks and also make informed decisions about which VoIP provider can provide the best service and protection.
What are the VoIP Providers in the UK data security protocols?
In the early days of VoIP, users were more concerned with cost, functionality, and call quality than with security issues. But when VoIP became more widely used by businesses, questions of security came to the forefront. Companies started to feel unsure about the safety of their data and consequently demanded better security protocols from VoIP providers.
As a result, VoIP companies established data breach protocols to mitigate VoIP security issues. Here are some of the protocols that the best VoIP providers use to keep their clients’ data secure:
As you can see, the best providers have invested time and money to ensure that they have robust security protocols in place. But in the unfortunate event of a data breach, VoIP providers generally follow a standard assessment procedure: First, they assess the severity of the breach and resolve it according to their safety protocols. They remotely control the impacted system and disable the compromised device. After that, they trace the amount of information leaked, the number of unauthorised logins, and to what extent the information was exposed. They would also have a phone data recovery plan in place.
Following the VoIP security assessment, providers typically work to restore data from back-up servers, adjust measures such as firewalls and user passwords, block suspicious IP addresses, and reimage any corrupted hardware.
Is VoIP safe from hackers?
There may be a significant number of VoIP security risks, however, experts agree that a properly configured VoIP system is more secure than any other communication system. The presence of network convergence and security protocols mitigate the vulnerabilities of VoIP. VoIP networks are secure primarily due to these four reasons:
Reason #1: Encryption
VoIP’s high level of encryption serves as the first line of defence against unauthorised entry into your company’s communication system. Encryption prevents hackers from breaking into your system and tampering with your calls to obtain sensitive or confidential information.
When calls are encrypted, the information transmitted is scrambled using an algorithm that only the receiving party can decrypt using a unique key. Examples of encryption include switching letters and combining numbers and special characters to create a complex encrypted message. This ensures sensitive information is kept safe from hackers.
Reason #2 Limited/Restricted System Access
One of the benefits of VoIP is that you can limit the number of people who can access your system. By allowing only a specific group of individuals to log into your VoIP network, you can control who can access your company’s private information.
If unauthorised individual attempts to log in your system, VoIP security protocols block these malicious log-in attempts and they are reported as potential hacking attacks.
Reason #3: System Monitoring
VoIP systems are maintained and monitored regularly to ensure that security protocols in place are always up-to-date. Online attacks can happen anytime, and even slightly outdated protocols can be susceptible to hackers.
Proactively identifying performance issues is critical to recognising problems at an early stage to prevent significant network downtime or failures. This is why it is crucial to have a VoIP provider who offers regular system monitoring and data backup.
Wave by VoIPTech offers a safe and secure VoIP network through its state-of-the-art encryption method, limited system access, regular system monitoring, and established protocols.
Reason #4: Established Protocols
VoIP providers follow established protocols, so you can expect that high-quality security is observed. These protocols were designed to prevent hackers from attacking business communication systems and accessing private information.
With the presence of protocols, companies can determine the opportunity cost that they are getting when they invest in VoIP systems. That is why you can assure that a well established VoIP security assessment is put in place for your company’s safety and protection.
Selecting the Right VoIP Provider
When setting up your company’s VoIP system, you need to select a trustworthy provider who can provide the service and features you need while also keeping your data secure. VoIPTech Solutions can tailor-fit a package that fits your organisation’s communication needs and also protects your cybersecurity.
Our VoIP phone service, Wave, enables you to connect cost-effectively with colleagues, business partners, and customers around the globe. We’ve designed this service to be simple, flexible, and secure, and we can get you up and running in no time.
We offer affordable packages packed with features designed to help your business grow. Call us on 020 3745 0202 to learn more about the services we offer.