VoIP security trends and predictions for 2007

Mark Collier, a leading voice over IP (VoIP) security scientist, author, and blogger, today announced the release of his “VoIP Security Trends and Predictions for 2007.” Mr. Collier’s prognostications have been posted to his popular VoIP security blog at: www.voipsecurityblog.com.

1) There is no doubt that VoIP security attacks have taken place, but very few have been widely publicized. I predict that in 2007, we will see enterprise VoIP systems attacked and the results publicized.

2) VoIP is an application running on the data network and will continue to be affected by attacks such as worms, virus, Denial of Service (DoS), etc. While these attacks may not directly target VoIP systems, they will disrupt operations because the underlying platforms are vulnerable to the attack.

3) We will also start to see more VoIP specific attacks, particularly aimed at the enterprise. There is more scrutiny of VoIP systems and attackers will find more issues that are unique to VoIP and the systems that enable it.

4) Attackers will also be developing more tools to exploit these issues. Even now, there are plenty of tools out there, but you can expect to see more tools and extensions to the tools currently available.

5) Denial of Service (DoS) will continue to be the most significant threat to VoIP systems. Many VoIP systems are very vulnerable to fuzzing and flood based attacks, including simple transport and application layer attacks.
6) You can expect enterprises to start deploying the Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) for handsets as well as connectivity to the public network. The move to SIP will affect security, because there is a long list of SIP attack tools available for use.

7) Even with the move to SIP, proprietary protocols will continue to dominate VoIP for several years. You will start to see new attack tools that target these protocols as well, especially for vendors with wide deployment (Cisco, Avaya, Nortel, Siemens, etc.).

8) Social threats such as voice phishing and voice SPAM will start to emerge. They will not be common, but their threat level will grow with the increasing adoption of VoIP. Social engineering attacks could start to become disruptive in late 2007.

9) Although vendors will increase their offerings for conversation encryption, it will not be widely employed by enterprises.

10) VoIP deployment has the potential to affect traditional networks. Attacks like DoS, SPIT, and toll fraud may “spill” over and affect legacy systems.”

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