Home > Technology & Telecom, Unified Communications (IPT) > Session Border Controllers a Must for Security in the UC Environment

Session Border Controllers a Must for Security in the UC Environment

With the push for mobility and cloud computing within the corporate environment, the implementation of Unified Communications (UC) has grown. Companies are leveraging Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) to keep all voice and data on the same network, and smartphones are becoming the communication tool of choice. With the conveniences offered in these platforms, the risks are also significant. As a result, IT teams need to examine the benefits associated with session border controllers.

The risks that are inherent in a UC environment are heightened with the use of the smartphone. For one thing, the device itself acts as a mobile endpoint that can physically contain data. It can also be exposed to non-compliant situations and software applications that are not approved for the network. The WLAN or cellular network in place to transport information could include non-protected networks. And, a lack of proper session border controllers creates an opportunity for access management issues as a result of interconnects between mobile endpoints and the UC infrastructure.

Certain threats to the network that session border controllers can inhibit include SIP scanning which includes tools to call every device on the PBX until a hackable device is found; VoIP hacking where toll fraud is conducted directly through the UC tools; VoIP-based phishing (Vishing) that makes trusted contact information vulnerable to hackers seeking personal details; SWATing or the use of spoofed Caller IDs to call emergency services and eavesdropping where voice communications are insufficiently encrypted and can be overhead or intercepted.

By placing session border controllers at key points within the network, organizations that struggle with UC threats can build the necessary infrastructure to support flexibility and mobility, without putting the network, applications or users at risk. Session border controllers also add protection to the smartphone, so companies can enable their employees to achieve the necessary life balance while on the road.

Best-in-class companies today, according to Aberdeen Research, do not simply build healthy firewalls or patch management capabilities. These steps are important, but these steps alone ignore the complexity associated with endpoints and communications. The proper placement of session border controllers reduce security incidents and help to eliminate audit deficiencies.

It is important to remember that the implementation of UC strategies is not just to aggregate all communications capabilities. This approach is also designed to improve overall business outcomes and increase collaboration throughout the organization. Session border controllers help to drive this collaboration and necessary business operation improvements by providing the safe network users demand. When the company understands the importance of UC security, they are better suited to improve the overall working environment.

Originally posted at: http://session-border-controllers.tmcnet.com/topics/session-border-controllers/articles/199437-session-border-controllers-must-security-the-uc-environment.htm

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