Among small business owners thinking about switching to VoIP phone service, one of the most common concerns for small business VoIP, is VoIP security. The concerns are both understandable and valid. With all the news we hear about security breaches on computer networks—from cyberattacks to hacking to phishing—it begs the question: wouldn’t a phone system that uses the internet be susceptible to the same kinds of attacks?
Let’s start with the good news: VoIP systems in general are quite secure nowadays. Most VoIP providers have already put the necessary safeguards in place to make sure your phone system, your network, and your personal data are all kept safe. That said, it’s important to remain diligent with your own VoIP security—the same as you should with your IT systems in general. Let’s begin our discussion by exploring some of the most common VoIP security issues faced by small businesses today, then talk about the steps you can take to keep your phone network safe.
Common VoIP Security Threats
Just as hackers are constantly inventing new ways to exploit computer systems, they’re also interested in finding and exploiting the vulnerabilities of VoIP business phone systems. And as with many computer breaches, some of the VoIP vulnerabilities actually depend on the user’s response to the threat, rather than the system itself. (For example, using easy-to-guess passwords or falling prey to a phishing scheme.) Let’s talk about some threats to look out for.
- DoS (Denial of Service) attacks. In the same way that networks can be shut down by an overwhelming amount of incoming requests, a VoIP phone service for business system, may be overloaded in the same way, causing dropped calls, reduced call quality, and a disruption of phone service.
- Toll fraud. Hackers sometimes break into VoIP business phone systems and use the service to make international calls that may generate a toll for use. (Getting an exorbitantly large phone bill is a dead giveaway for this kind of attack.)
- War dialing. Just as with toll fraud, hackers can break into a VoIP system and use it to dial thousands of random numbers looking for interesting connections. (You may experience the other side of this tactic when you answer random spam calls with no one on the other line. If you dial the number back (you shouldn’t), you might find a person on the other end who has no idea their phone number was used to make the call.)
- Call interception. Hackers may occasionally listen in on your calls, sometimes to mine sensitive information they can then use against you.
- “Vishing.” This is basically the same as “phishing,” except it’s via phone rather than email. Someone calls you from a seemingly trusted Caller ID, alerts you of a “problem” and tries to get you to divulge sensitive information over the phone.
- Viruses and malware. VoIP business phone systems can be susceptible to viruses just as other software systems can, which can result in anything from malfunctions to data mining to a complete shutdown of service.
These security risks aside, Orange County, Los Angeles, San Diego, Riverside, San Bernardino and Inland Empire small business owners can rest assured knowing that NetServ business VoIP phone services has abundant security features in place to prevent these and other VoIP security threats. Call 1-877-NetServ to learn more.