Snom, the professional IP solutions specialist, has investigated the importance that users place on the security of IP phones, which are potentially prone to cyber attack. Thanks to the progression of digital transformation, mobility and the generalization of teleworking, IP telephony has become one of the essential tools for collaboration in business. However, if we often worry about the security of computers and mobile phones, it is rare that the security of IP terminals is mentioned or even included in infrastructure security plans.
The use of VoIP has jumped in recent years with the mobility and digital transformation of businesses. According to Snom’s survey, out of the 3,156 professional users interviewed by the independent market research institute Norstat in France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Italy and Spain, between February and early March 2020 , only 14% do not have desk phones. An average slightly decreasing in France with 84% of respondents who use this type of phone.
Among the players in global VoIP, the vulnerabilities are unevenly shared according to the Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) list. While half of European professional VoIP users feel that the level of security and interoperability of IP terminals is a matter of brand awareness, the other half is convinced that all IP phones are secure and care little advanced functions. For one in two European users, the brand of desk phone does not matter, “as long as you can make calls.” Two absolutely dichotomous and incorrect perceptions.
The study thus reveals a marked ignorance about the security of telephony which can be part of a targeted attack against the computer systems of companies. “These are situations which can be extremely damaging for companies,” explains Noémia Domingues, Channel manager at Snom France. The first risk is eavesdropping, which can be a means of extracting important and even strategic information. The second risk, which happens to a lot of companies, is on the operator side where hackers use the hacked company’s system as a gateway to make calls that are billed to it. “