Wednesday, May 17, 2006

The VoIP fear factor

At VON Europe, experts from well known VoIP vendors have publicly admitted that many of their products were not inter-operable with those form other vendors. They also said these vendors were not implementing basic security technologies over their entire product range. What an interesting disclosure. I was under the impression VoIP was a communication enabler. Maybe incompatible VoIP technologies are just a way to protect the large investments made in legacy voice systems by the same vendors? Or is it just a way to lock potential customers in…

But what I find really unsettling is the use of the fear factor all throughout this article. No fact, no analysis, a clear un-understanding of the issues at stake. Just a un-intelligible blurb of words between unrelated “experts” quotes. Somebody will have to explain to me the role of TLS in an UDP based VoIP system, for example. But the keyword TLS will probably bring this page in good position in the results o a search engine when looking for VoIP security.

One thing is certain, though, deploying a SIP VoIP infrastructure is the kind of project that makes your entire security protection look like swiss cheese. And fingerpointing the other party for lack of security understanding will not change this result.

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