Cloud IP Telephony (VoIP) explained in 2 minutes…

Cloud IP Telephony or VoIP uptake amongst organisations is growing due to the movement towards ‘Cloud Computing’ or the Software-as-a-Service model. Cloud has enabled organisations to have access to the latest technology without having to make a large capital investment.

Compared to traditional phone lines, VoIP solutions not only help lower the costs but, it also helps consolidates existing suppliers into one. Watch our 2 minute video to find out more…

For more information on VoIP services and the benefits please contact Netshield today on 0845 603 5552

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VoIP, Voice over Internet Protocol – What? How? Why?

VoIP NetshieldVoice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) also known as Internet Telephony, IP Telephony, Voice over broadband and Voice over Network; it is a technology that allows calls to be made over the internet or a computer network.

VoIP is not a brand new technology but it is gaining more popularity due to the general movement towards cloud technology, improvements in the speed and reliability of internet connectivity and the trend of workforce mobility.

How VoIP works

Traditional landline phones operate through a Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) and you can gain access to it through the telephone sockets. These networks use circuit switching – when a call is made, these circuits change within the exchange in order to connect the caller and the receiver.

Whereas, VoIP calls are made over the internet and use the method of packet switching – when making a call the data is broken up into data packets, transported across the network and reassembled when it reaches the receiver.

Why VoIP? The Benefits

With the vast improvements of internet connectivity and the decrease in prices since 10 years ago, VoIP is becoming a feasible option for businesses today.

To deploy a traditional telephone system a high capital outlay is needed because of the number of components required i.e. buying a phone system, business line rental, maintenance contracts, hardware costs and pay for software upgrades.

Whereas, VoIP systems compared to traditional telephone systems has minimal capital expense i.e. the purchase of IP enabled phones and internet connection. But, it is also simple to administer and user friendly because it uses the power of the cloud technology.

A VoIP system can provide businesses with an integration of both office and mobile devices, allowing employees to have an office phone that can ‘go anywhere’, making it ideal for those who work remotely and for companies that have hot desking. This flexibility can help increase efficiencies and productivity as users can easily manage and receive calls. It can also be scaled up and down when required, offering future proofing capabilities.

For more information on VoIP or advice whether to switch contact us today.

Managed IT Services Provider adds VoIP to their Service Portfolio

September 2014, Managed IT Services provider Netshield has expanded their portfolio to include Hosted Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) Telephony service; which will help SMEs benefit from cost-savings and simplified administration compared to traditional telephone systems.

Building on the years of experience in providing Datacentre and Hosting services to businesses throughout Europe, Netshield will now be able to provide Hosted Voice services as well. The Hosted VoIP service will enable users to transmit voice traffic over an internet connection rather than over traditional wires. This will offer companies flexibility and help reduce costs without compromising on functionality.

The service will include features such as secure instant messaging, presence functionality, video calling, collaboration tools, simple administration and integration of office and mobile services.

Richard Carty, Commercial Director at Netshield commented ‘VoIP is ideal for SMEs and remote workers because it has minimal capital expense, easy to manage, user friendly and it is scalable. With traditional systems companies have to deal with a number of suppliers for the upkeep, with VoIP it consolidates which saves a considerable amount of time.’

‘With the movement towards cloud technology, adding VoIP services will be complementary to our range of Hosted and Managed IT services’ added Richard Carty.

Beware of the Microsoft Voice Phishing Scams!

The number of reports of fraudsters calling people and pretending to be Microsoft Support Technicians in voice phishing scams is on the increase. The fake Microsoft support technician would call advising they need to remote onto the user computer to deal with a call that has been logged or to fix an issue the user is unaware about.

Do not let these malicious people onto your system if they remote onto your system, they can:-

  • Install malicious software to steal and capture sensitive data, like your banking information
  • They could direct you to fraudulent websites and ask you to input your credit card details
  • Ask for credit card details for authenticating reasons and then use the information to charge you for the fake services
  • They can adjust the system settings making it vulnerable and available for them to access in future.
NetFlix Phishing Scam

Netflix Phishing Scam leads to Fake Microsoft Tech Support

But, beware these voice phishing campaigns are becoming more elaborate; for example there has been reports the scammers would impersonate other popular companies like Netflix in order to direct the victim to a fake Microsoft support agent.

It is very rare that Microsoft would contact end users directly especially, when you haven’t personally logged a support call with them.

If you do receive a call from a so-called Microsoft Technician you can ask the following questions to help determine whether it is a phishing campaign:-

  • the name of the person that logged the support call with them?
  • the telephone number they are calling from?
  • their name?
  • the Microsoft support case reference number?

Genuine Microsoft Technicians would have the answers to these questions. If it is a genuine call Microsoft technician they would provide a support case reference number and ask for the person who logged the call immediately. Also Microsoft will never ask for credit card details during a support call and would provide their contact name and telephone number willingly.

Voice Phishing

A BBC news article also reported bank and courier voice phishing complaints have increased in the latter part of 2013. It states that the fraudsters tend to target some of the most vulnerable people within society and the average age of victims is 70 years old.

So, act with caution if you receive a call from someone claiming they are from banks, police, utility companies and asking you for personal information like pins, payment, account details, credit card numbers etc. These malicious people are trained to be convincing so, even if they provide you with a number for you to call back on don’t do it! This is because once you put down the phone the criminal can keep the line open at their end so, when you call the number, you are unknowingly connected directly back to the fraudster!

Conclusion

It is sad to think fraudsters have the ability to take advantage of our trust, fear and innocence, to persuade us to part with our personal information. Voice Phishing is not likely to go away anytime soon and judging from the recent NetFlix story they are likely to become more elaborate.

So, be vigilant and do not trust unsolicited calls and treat them like phishing emails, just hang up and go about your day. Whatever you do not provide them with any personal information.