Predicting the Future of IP Phones: Will They Go Extinct?
When talking about extinction, one tends to think of dinosaurs, the dodo, or maybe an endangered species such as the rhinoceros. So, when talking about technology that goes extinct, one might presume the ice box, the buggy whip, or maybe the rotary dial phone. One hardly thinks about VoIP (voice-over Internet protocol) phones as being relegated to the evolutionary trash can. Yet, that’s exactly what some online magazines and blogs are saying.
Crystal Balls Say Obsolescence?
Not too long ago, phone companies announced land lines and the current telephone system as being obsolete. In fact, many major phone companies are looking to switch to VoIP.
To predict that IP phones now will be rendered obsolete might seem a bit off-kilter. After all, there are still fax machines in offices, and people still have desk phones. It’s unlikely, it seems, that the IP phone will go the way of the dodo.
SIP (session initiation protocol) and changing open standards have radically changed the IP phone industry.
No longer do businesses need to rely on proprietary technology. Because of this, the IP telephone is evolving to suit the needs of those who use it. Whether it’s a call center or the need for a rugged phone system in factories and warehouses, the IP phone has changed to suit the needs of the customer.
No New Window
One IP phone that is certain to stand the test of time is the type of IP phone that allows users to make and receive phone calls without having to open up a window on their computer. This IP phone allows the user to have all the conveniences of a desktop phone with all the benefits of using VoIP.
Simplicity Breeds Productivity
When looking for simplicity in a phone, think open source and fewer features. Fewer features allow the user to focus on doing the job, not on trying to learn a complex system. Like the above IP phones, many of these phones are not proprietary and will work with other open source software and equipment.
Keeping the IP phone simple makes it easier to use; thus, employees are more productive.
A Bright Future
No matter what the future holds for phone systems, it’s likely that IP phones will be there, thriving alongside new innovations and legacy systems.
As long as there is VoIP, there will be a need for something as flexible and familiar as IP phones. In addition, as the needs of clients continue to change, IP phones will continue to change along with those needs.
What Every Business Needs to Know: Toll Fraud & VoIP
Toll fraud is a serious security threat for businesses that use VoIP (voice-over Internet protocol), which is especially susceptible to toll fraud. Besides being a type of fraud–which no business wants–toll fraud can cause serious financial damage for businesses.
Yet, some business owners are not aware of what toll fraud is nor of the steps they should take to ensure that it doesn’t happen to their business.
What is Toll Fraud?
Toll fraud is the stealing of minutes from and the tacking on of outrageous charges to both conventional phone systems and VoIP.
In the past, with legacy switches, toll fraud was very lucrative, but it was harder to accomplish, because phone companies relied on switches, and there was no connection to the Internet. Now, hackers target business VoIP systems, which often have more lax security than company computers, and are able to cash in on the toll fraud schemes.
Why Toll Fraud?
Besides stealing minutes, hackers get a cut whenever they commit toll fraud. Toll fraud is big business in some smaller countries that have primitive phone systems with little or no usage. These phone companies charge outrageous rates because very few people use them. Hackers will break into a business’s phone system and use their VoIP to these select countries, racking up huge toll bills. The phone system makes its money from those toll charges, and the hackers get a cut.
Unfortunately, once a company falls victim to toll fraud, the business has little recourse but to pay for it. Most of the charges are paid to the terminating carrier in the country to where the phone calls were made.
Why is VoIP Vulnerable?
Because VoIP is easy to hack, hackers are quick to break into company telephony systems and commit toll fraud.
Even though the amount of money isn’t as big as it once was, the amount of money hackers can make, both for themselves and the countries that initiate the toll fraud schemes, is still sizable. Given that in 2014, the average cost of a VoIP attack was around $36,000, businesses need to be concerned about toll fraud, because most small businesses are unable to absorb that kind of hit.
Because businesses are likely to consider that now that they have VoIP, they simply get free calling and toll fraud shouldn’t concern them, businesses are more likely to become victims of toll fraud. Because toll fraud operates differently, it becomes all that more imperative for businesses to protect their VoIP systems.