5 Handy tips to combat VoIP eavesdropping

Combat VoIP Eavesdropping

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone systems allow users to communicate with others over an internet connection, that delivers the media over Internet Protocol (IP) networks.  As is standard with digital data, these present a vulnerability in that cybercriminals can intercept the data transmitted between two callers among other VOIP threats. This form of cyberattack is known as “Eavesdropping”.

Adjusting the default setup of your VoIP system

Using your VoIP phone without changing its factory settings may be the biggest blunder you can make. The same can be said for most technical equipment such as printers for example.  Default setups for technical equipment are meant for easy access so that new owners can then further manage the device as needed. Not only hackers, but anyone can easily check vendor manuals for default usernames and passwords, as this requires no skillset to accomplish besides the use of Google search. Once accessed with default credentials, the given user would then be signed directly into the highest level Administrator account available on the device. Thus, configuring a new username and password for your VoIP phone is a critical first step upon unboxing. Your password should include a combination of uppercase letters, lowercase letters, and numbers to avoid the risk of brute force attacks.  Furthermore, please remember to avoid the use of any passwords that have been confirmed to be compromised, such passwords are highly recommended to no longer be cycled as a set password for any accounts.

Keep your VoIP system updated

Hackers are always looking for vulnerabilities in software. As such, it’s important to keep your VoIP system up to date with the latest security patches as a key concept for patches that are pushed out are to specifically address potential or known exploits and vulnerabilities. Check with your provider or security administrator regularly for updates and install them as soon as possible.  Moreover, please limit the procrastination of applying available updates as this only enlarges the window of vulnerability.

Update session border controllers

When you update your session border controllers (SBCs), you’ll be updating your VoIP’s antivirus software, which means your systems are better protected from all known types of malware. This also helps to ensure that your calls aren’t being rerouted through malicious VoIP servers, which is common practice when eavesdropping is attempted.

Encrypt VoIP calls

VoIP calls are transmitted over the internet in packets. If these packets are intercepted, anyone can listen in on your conversations. To prevent this from happening, you need to encrypt your VoIP calls as you would other forms of communication such as e-mail and etc…

You can do this by using a virtual private network, which encrypts all the data passing through your device. You can also use Secure Real-Time Transport Protocol, a VoIP security protocol dedicated to encrypting voice calls.

Build a hardened VoIP network

Make sure your VoIP network has:

  • Firewalls with managed access control lists
  • Endpoint security with authentication
  • Lightweight Directory Access Protocol lookup
  • A demilitarized zone (DMZ) that contains a separate VoIP network from your company’s main network

VoIP eavesdropping is a serious threat, but the right tools make it feasible and manageable to protect your VOIP conversations.  Cybersecurity is a critical concept for our team here at Beringer! Don’t tackle these various threats alone, schedule a consultation with our team to review your network’s infrastructure at your convenience!

Beringer Technology Group, a leading Microsoft Gold Certified Partner specializing in Microsoft Dynamics 365 and CRM for Distribution also provides expert Managed IT ServicesBackup and Disaster RecoveryCloud Based Computing, Email Security Implementation and TrainingUnified Communication Solutions, and Cybersecurity Risk Assessment.