Unified Communications Featured Article

GreenfieldTech Exec Readies VoIP Security Talk


December 13, 2016

Open source is one of the most important trends in networking today. So are DevOps, mobile, VoIP, and WebRTC. Greenfield Technologies, which got its start as an open source consulting company but today develops enterprise- and carrier-grade network and software solutions for voice, video, messaging, and mobile, is involved in all of the above.

Given that 2016 is coming to a close and that ITEXPO is just around the corner, we thought now would be a good time to touch base with Eric Klein, senior consultant and vice president of customer experience at GreenfieldTech, to get his thoughts about important trends in tech.

What elements of unified communications are most useful for your company?

Actually, unified communications still has a long way to go. I recently looked at my phone and found that in addition to traditional mobile calls and text (SMS), I had seven different communications apps – each for a different customer or to fit a specific need. These included five messaging and four conferencing apps.

Are you using messaging technologies to communicate with your customers? 

Yes. We are using many different tools as requested by the customers.  Some want WhatsApp groups, others are tied to Slack teams, a few are still using Skype groups for messages. It makes for very connected and convoluted communications.

How can artificial intelligence best be used in business applications?

Right now AI can be used to handle two areas very well and is growing from there.

1.       Automated responses to common problems / sales activities – bots or natural language searches.

2.       Pattern recognition and abnormal activity detection – if there is enough data to determine patterns then finding the abnormality is a good task for AI.

How will augmented/virtual reality by used in business environments? 

Augmented reality will be useful for visualization of data and easy manipulation. This is still a new process, even though it has been around since the ‘90s. Only now are the tools starting to match the hype. This is also true of the B2C opportunities for businesses to provide additional information via augmented reality that was hinted at via Google Glasses and Pokémon Go either via geo coding or QR codes.

How have the growing number of high-visibility security breaches impacted your outlook on security? 

All of them are of concern, but [it’s] hard to decide which trend is scarier: the ones for medical systems (21st Century Oncology, Premier Healthcare, and MedStar Health Inc.) or the cloud systems that everyone uses (Snapchat, Yahoo, Hotmail, Gmail, Dropbox, and LinkedIn). When your cloud providers are not secure, then nothing you do will let you be safe.

Is the cloud/MSP model a realistic one for reliable IT security? 

Yes, the managed service provider business model is working nicely for IT security and should grow over the next few years as better tools are deployed. This covers everything from the telecom system through data storage/backup, and services. In many cases it is better to outsource this than to try and have staff that can keep up with all of the constantly changing challenges that a company will need to face for IT.

Have you increased your investment in security technology in the past year? 

[We’ve done] some increase in security spending, more on security education for the community. Visit my [ITEXPO] talk this year for VoIP Security 101 - What You Need to Know. This session offers an introductory primer to securing your VoIP PBX. With the number of attacks on your telephone services and mobile devices, your chance of being attacked and financial liability is at an all-time high. This talk will include explanations about common attacks, how they can find you, and common techniques you can use to defend your company.




Edited by Maurice Nagle




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