Tag Archives: BusinessPhones

How to Keep Your VoIP Highly Secure

close up man hand point to press button number on telephone office desk with virtual interface effect of VOIP security concept

Cyber Security doesn’t stop at your data network, does your managed service provider review your VoIP System?

VoIP is the standard for office phone systems today. It offers economy, versatility, and valuable features. It’s the only reasonable choice for a new exchange. When it’s done right, it provides a very secure communication system, much safer than email. Calls within the network, as well as many outside calls, have end-to-end security.

Like any other function on the network, it takes some attention to make sure it really is secure. There are people who try to get into every network, and phone systems are as much of a target as any other point of entry. Nothing can eliminate all risk, but a careful approach to selection, installation, and management keeps it down to a very low level.

Reasons for caring about VoIP security

Any part of a network can be a jumping-off point for attacks on the rest of it. Every device needs to be kept as safe as reasonably possible. VoIP phones, like workstations, smartphones, and servers, need to be part of the network security plan.

If the exchange isn’t well secured, people can get in and use it for free. They increase the costs as well as the load on the network. Unauthorized calls can reduce the quality of service for legitimate ones.

Spies could listen in on calls, gathering business secrets or personal information. Once they’ve collected enough information, they can impersonate key employees and engage in plausible-sounding scams.

A weakly secured system is more vulnerable to a denial-of-service (DoS) attack, making it impossible to place calls. Such an attack, sustained for hours, can seriously disrupt business.

A security plan that takes VoIP into account greatly reduces these risks and ensures reliable phone service. Users can make calls with greater confidence.

Setting up the service

The first steps’ come with the selection and ordering of the service. The hosting provider needs to handle its own security well. If you set up an on-premises PBX, you take on responsibility for it and need to make sure it’s well managed. Most businesses, especially small to medium-sized ones, find that hosting is the sensible choice.

Make sure that the service which you choose offers secure protocols in the service package you select. Secure SIP does for voice connections what HTTPS does for Web access. It uses TLS security to prevent unauthorized access and ensure that the connecting parties are who they claim to be. Secure RTP, or SRTP, encrypts the content of communications, making it nearly impossible to spy on. As a bonus, it makes DoS attacks more difficult.

Setting up the network

Adding VoIP to a network requires some configuration changes. This is the time to minimize the vulnerability of voice connections on the network.

The voice network ought to be segregated from the data network. One approach is to have two separate networks, each with its own router and devices. That can require significant rewiring, though. Having voice and data on separate subnets accomplishes almost the same thing and is easier to set up. Either way, the separation improves quality of service as well as security.

Voice and data devices should have separate IP address ranges, so they don’t get mixed up with each other. If a DHCP server assigns the addresses, voice and data should each have their own DHCP allocations.

Many businesses have multiple locations, and employees would like access to the phone exchange from home or in the field. Setting up a virtual private network (VPN) or wide-area network (WAN) keeps all intra-office calls inside the network. They give an extra layer of safety, encrypting all traffic.

Securing the administrative functions is vital. Keep the number of people who have access small, and use multi-factor authentication. Allowing administrative access only from specified IP addresses further improves safety.

Securing the users

The individual devices and user accounts need ongoing attention. When configuring phones and softphone applications, each one needs to have a strong and distinct SIP password.

People like being able to access the voice network from their personal phones. Setting them up with compatible applications and VPN access makes this possible. However, a well-managed BYOD policy is necessary to keep matters under control. If someone installs a softphone app on an infected phone, that could give spies access to the voice network and more. A good policy for user-owned devices sets standards for acceptable device types, and it lets the administrator cut off any misbehaving devices.

When using their personal phones in the office, people will often prefer to go through Wi-Fi rather than the cell network and VPN. Access is more direct and faster. All Wi-Fi access points in the office should already use WPA2 encryption, and voice access is one more reason to make sure they do.

Ongoing maintenance

Security isn’t something administrators can set up and forget about. It requires regular maintenance. Vulnerabilities will turn up from time to time in both phone firmware and voice applications. Where there are known vulnerabilities, attacks soon follow. Keeping the phones and software patched with the latest security releases will keep anyone from exploiting those weaknesses.

Network monitoring and periodic security scans will alert administrators to any problems. The sooner a problem is caught, the less damage it will do. The system should maintain logs of activity to aid in diagnosing any issues. The logs need to be kept safe, since they could provide attackers with clues about weaknesses in the network.

VoIP needs the same attention to security as any other network function. When everything works right, it’s safer than a PSTN connection, since conversations never travel through analog lines. Intra-office calls are secure from end to end, and conversations with other VoIP systems often have the same level of protection. With a reasonable level of care, employees can discuss confidential matters safely.

SystemsNet hosts, maintains, and upgrades your VoIP for you, so you don’t have to worry about configuration errors or security patches. You can use your PBX in confidence. Contact us to learn how to get started.

How VOIP Mobilizes Your Workforce

Business man in a car using VOIP to make and receive calls from the same number

Flexibility in an ever changing business environment is key to exceeding customer expectations

A lot of things have been said about internet phones, but the one thing we can all agree on is that VoIP is the single most mobile phone solution that has ever been introduced to the business world. Even in the age of cellphones, business professionals would have had to give out three or four numbers in order to work in the office, at home, and in the field. VoIP changes all that. VoIP allows employees to connect from any internet device answering and calling from the same number.

This simple set of features means that no matter where team members are, clients and partners can call just one number to find them instead of sorting through a list of numbers that might be the work, home, and mobile numbers. Instead of employees having to juggle multiple cellphones or connect in multiple ways, they merely need to log into the VOIP platform from any of their many devices. What this does, ultimately, is make your workforce incredibly mobile, seamlessly mobile. Let’s dive into the many ways this can work.

Customers Can Always Call the Same Number with VoIP

No matter where your employees are, customers always call the same number. If a team member is handling an account, the customer need only call one number to get their favorite account manager, If a team member is part of a service pool, they will be sorted calls from customers no matter their physical location or device when answering.

VoIP Makes Telecommuting a Seamless Experience

This means that telecommuting, when employees log into work from their home office, becomes a seamless experience as well. Employees are still part of the internal network. They can make and answer calls just the same as if they were at their desk in the office.

VoIP Makes Business Trips Easy

Likewise for business trips. Once an isolating and hassle-rich experience, employees on business trips can now connect smoothly back to the team and/or their clients as soon as they are set up in the hotel room. In fact, any quiet location with internet access will have them back online and virtually back in the office.

VoIP Keeps Employees in the Field Connected

What about team members who jet about town meeting clients and dealing with worksites? People who are seldom in the office or who often need to leave the office can also stay connected. In fact, your VoIP number doubles as a second active number on a cellphone so that cell numbers stay private and clients can call the same VOIP number whether the team member is in the office or out in the field.

VoIP Opens the Door to Remote Employees

For the same reasons, it is now much easier to integrate remote positions with VoIP because these distant team members can connect directly to the office’s internal phone system. They can pick up an extension, participate in a call service pool, receive call transfers, and be a part of conference calls just as easily as if they were based in the home office.

VoIP Makes Your Business More Accessible

Because remote work is so much easier to implement, VoIP also makes your business more welcoming to the physically handicapped who have an easier time working in their optimized home offices. Handicap accommodation in the workplace is not always the ideal solution. When an industry expert would make a great addition to your team except that they need to work from home to work comfortably, then a VoIP-powered remote position is the most welcoming accommodation you can provide.

VoIP Makes it Easy to Work From Multiple Locations

VoIP is also great for circuit-managers, business owners of multiple locations, and teams that move from worksite to worksite depending on the project. After all, your home office is wherever the phone rings, and VoIP allows your central business number (or numbers) to ring to any device that has connected. No matter where you are currently located.

VoIP Lets Parents Parents Work When Kids are Home Sick

Finally, VoIP opens the door for sick days, both for employees and sick children. When a team member is too sick to commute (or avoiding infecting team members) they can telecommute from home instead. And when an employee is perfectly well but must stay home with a sick child, they can connect and clock in several hours while the child naps in recovery or watches cartoons as sick children often do.

VoIP is a fantastic addition to any business as an affordable and versatile alternative to the traditional PBX. But its best function is to mobilize the workforce in more ways than can easily be enumerated. Even this list covers only a few of the many ways that VoIP makes it easier to connect from anywhere while maintaining a unified phone system. Contact us today to find out how VoIP can mobilize your workforce!

VoIP’s Role in the Modern Telephony System

Portrait of contemporary adult man smiling while using laptop to video call using VoIP

Switching to VoIP adds tremendous flexibility to your organization that is not possible with traditional phone systems

VoIP. UC. PSTN. SIP. POTS. The acronyms associated with the telecommunications industry have become so prolific that it’s a challenge to just sort through all the clutter. Loosely interpreted jargon also contributes to the confusion. In this post, we’ll attempt to work through the clutter and simplify the myriad choices that are available for today’s business environment.

To simply understand how one product or service intertwines with another can lead to conniptions. Just knowing where to start is a challenge even for larger enterprises with a deep bench. For smaller businesses, the experience of selecting the system that best meets the company’s needs is often an exercise in sheer frustration. The best place to begin your journey through the telecom landscape is by boiling it all down to the basics and building from there.

VoIP Integration Into Modern Telephony Platforms

We all remember Plain Old Telephone Systems(POTS). Although still in limited use, POTS is a dying telephony model. Advancements in digital technology have made VoIP-based platforms the standard with more robust platforms such as Soft phones and Unified Communications (UC) suites. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages involving price, implementation, maintenance costs, ease of operation, and the platform’s capabilities.

VoIP Soft Phones- These are essentially a virtual phone system.  Usually, they are apps that appear on a computer screen and mimic the capabilities of more traditional phones via a computer screen


  • Greater Performance Over POTS (Plain Old Telephone Systems)- Soft phones are more powerful and versatile than traditional landline phones.
  • Enables office to stay connected to off-premises employees and vendors via VoIP.
  • More user-friendly for workers in an office setting.

VoIP-enabled Unified Communications (UC) Systems is a category of “as a service” or “cloud” delivery mechanisms for enterprise communications.


  • Better prioritization of Information- Due to its improved functionality, UC offers multiple ways to connect to staff. According to data gathered by Chadwick Martin Bailey, a research consulting firm, 49% of user organizations save up to 20 minutes per employee daily by reaching workers on the first try via a UC solution.
  • It offers more tools for enhanced productivity. The platform includes communication tools like IM, voicemail-to-email, shared calendars, and direct fax to an inbox, that helps to integrate and consolidate your data.
  • The platform is engineered to function as a centralized communication system.  This allows for phone calls, emails, video conferencing, calendars, and the like to be accessible on one system alone.
  • Makes it possible to receive phone calls through a mobile phone, and by sending and receiving copies of voicemails on the computer. Essentially, it can communicate through a number of iterations encompassing the IoT’s arsenal of tools.
  • It becomes a conduit of mobile technologies that can more easily be used to organize work groups and improve productivity on-premises and off-campus. This means that virtual conference calls can be an important tool in the process of doing business. UC also saves employees and other business associates a great deal of time and wasted effort.
  • Scalability- The platform grows with your business. The system is an ideal solution for growing companies.
  • Cloud Solutions-Allowing for a mobile workflow that enhances efficiencies and retains the new generation of workers. This allows for remote work, hot-desking, improved collaboration, and the ability to work from their mobile phones and phablets.
VoIP Driven CX (Customer Experience) Systems

A CX System is most often found in a call center environment. It is a closed-loop system that performs where customer management is the primary function.


  • Improves Customer Satisfaction
  • Manages all customer-centric communications
  • Integrates with CRM platforms such as Salesforce (collect data, create business analytics, etc.)
  • Delivers an Omni-Channel customer experience
About SystemNet

SystemsNet is an certified provider of comprehensive IT managed services encompassing everything from on-site support to hardware and software implementation. Located in Horsham, PA, our service area stretches across the tri-state area including Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Lancaster, Montgomery, and Philadelphia counties. 

For more information on how SystemsNet can solve your IT issues, contact us.

Using VOIP to Optimize Your Interns and Seasonal Staff

Interns using VOIP

Quick setup for seasonal staff, temporary numbers, special queues, temporary routings, no problem!

Every industry has a busy season, of a sort. The holiday shopping season, the tax preparation season, the summer construction season; these are just a few examples. Some businesses fluctuate more than others, and many bring on seasonal staff to help tide over the busiest time of year. You may also be the type of business that occasionally welcomes interns, sponsors job training programs, and other types of temporary staff.

Of course, one of the biggest challenges of bringing on temporary staff, whether interns or seasonal, is the constant task of onboarding. Helping your new staff get adjusted to the office and dive into the workflow quickly is the key to optimizing your time with temporary staff members. And VOIP is the perfect aspect of your stack to make onboarding and integration a smooth process.

The Intern Number

If you bring on a set number of interns each year, every time they come in they occupy the same desks. They do the same tasks and they answer the same phones. One thing you can very easily do with VOIP is to set aside a special number, or set of numbers, just for the interns. This can keep your records clean and help your clients or vendors that work with the interns always calling the same numbers when it’s intern season.

Whether you have your interns calling vendors, performing customer service, taking care of follow-ups, or updating inventory; setting aside numbers for your interns means that interns can come and go but the job stays exactly the same.

Scale Up or Down with Seasonal Staff

Businesses that hire seasonal staff often find themselves investing in too many phone lines most of the year in order to have enough during the one part of the year when your staff size swells. But with VOIP, this isn’t necessary. VOIP scales easily with the size of your company, allowing you to reserve as many active lines as you need at any given time. When your staff is small during most of the year, you can pay for and manage only the phone lines you need. And when your seasonal staff members arrive to help carry you through the busy season, you can expand your plan to as many phone lines as you need.

This not only means that you save money and logistical time during the non-busy season, but also that you can scale to however many numbers you need if a particular year is especially busy. Then, if you hold onto some of your best seasonal workers by making them permanent, you can easily hold onto their lines and release the rest when the seasonal team moves on.

Fast and Smooth Onboarding Every Year

Finally, VOIP makes it incredibly easy to onboard new team members whenever they join and no matter how quickly they leave. VOIP communication platforms have team members automatically joining your phone network, chat network, and cloud communication. No need to worry about providing devices or asking your employees to use their personal numbers for BYOD workplaces. Whether you hire remotely, in-office, or your seasonal team members are out in the field, the VOIP number will work on whatever devices are used. No SIM cards, no new phone lines, and an easy-to-access platform that any new staff member can get the hang of quickly.

All they have to do is install the VOIP app on their phones, laptops, or tablets and they are instantly able to access their assigned phone number while keeping their personal contact information completely private.

VOIP is one of the best possible tools for any business that hosts interns or hires seasonal staff because it is so easy to scale and manage. Whether you keep a few numbers on the back-burner for interns or scale as-needed for impressive changes in staff-size throughout the year, VOIP is the key to smooth onboarding and efficient cost-effective cloud communication. If you’d like to explore how VOIP plans can scale with your seasonal staffing needs, contact us today!