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SIP Trunks - Keeping Your UC System Secure

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The appeal of Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) trunks as a means of connecting UC systems to the outside world is growing in popularity. SIP trunks offer lower operating costs, more flexibility in ordering service and capacities and advanced features, such as virtual phone numbers in different geographies, which let companies establish a virtual worldwide presence.

In contrast to legacy PRI trunks, SIP

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The appeal of Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) trunks as a means of connecting UC systems to the outside world is growing in popularity. SIP trunks offer lower operating costs, more flexibility in ordering service and capacities and advanced features, such as virtual phone numbers in different geographies, which let companies establish a virtual worldwide presence.

In contrast to legacy PRI trunks, SIP trunks use IP-based protocols that require a system to be opened up to a wide area network (WAN) that should be assumed insecure.

Customers must educate themselves about the salient security aspects pertaining to SIP trunks and how to ensure the appropriate level of security.

SIP was developed by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and has become a leading signaling protocol for establishing real-time communications, including voice-over-IP (VoIP) calls.

However, SIP-based communication originating from outside the enterprise does not automatically reach users on the local area network (LAN) as it has to traverse firewalls and/or routers that perform Network Address Translation (NAT). Firewalls are designed to prevent inbound communications from unknown sources and the NAT feature gets in the way of proper addressing of users and devices on the LAN.

The choice of method for traversing firewalls/NATs is, to a large extent, dependent on the answer to the question: “Who should be in control of your SIP trunk security: the enterprise firewall administrator or the service provider?”

 

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