If you’ve been thinking about ditching your hotel’s legacy phone system in favor of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) telephony, you’ve probably spent some time weighing the pros and cons. You’re excited about the prospect of saving money on hardware and maintenance, and you’re even more thrilled with the incredible new features that will benefit your guests and staff alike.
On the flip side, you may have some concerns about VoIP security. Will hackers be able to eavesdrop or access secure business information? Could your hotel’s phone system become vulnerable to malware and viruses? Or could your phone services be interrupted due to acts of God or Denial of Service (DoS) attacks?
We understand that the idea of threats like these can be scary, but we’re here to assure you that there’s not anything to worry about -- so long as you take a few simple security measures. Adhering to the following tips will go a long way in ensuring that your VoIP phone system is just as secure and reliable (if not more so) than the legacy systems you’ve depended on for years.
Use Network Passwords
Your entire network needs to be protected with a unique and secure password that couldn’t be guessed by an outsider. Avoid using words and numbers that are associated with your hotel, such as street names or phone numbers. A strong password will utilize a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, and will use at least one number and one special symbol.
Your VoIP network deserves the same level of security that you’d insist on for any computer or data network. Make sure that you deploy strong firewalls within your server that are appropriate to the level of protection you require.
Make Use of Data Encryption
Data encryption isn’t just for businesses and organizations with highly classified and secure information; even hotels can benefit from it. This is because encrypted data makes it a lot more difficult for cyber hackers to attack your network, thus boosting your overall level of security.
Make sure that anyone accessing your VoIP network is actually authorized to do so. The best way to handle this is by requiring authentication via usernames and/or passwords.
Assign User Passwords
In addition to network passwords, individual employees who will be making use of mobile devices should also be required to deploy passwords. Make sure that your team’s passwords are unique and impossible to guess.
Change Passwords Regularly
To be truly secure, passwords need to be changed on a regular basis. Consider requiring your hotel to change its network password and insisting that your staff update individual passwords every 4-6 months. This makes it more difficult for third parties to guess passwords and access your network.
Train Your Staff
Let your staff in on the potential security risks for phone systems and how to avoid them. Education is the key to prevention.
Monitor Your System
Keep an eye on who is using your phone network, when, and why. This will make it possible for you to spot abnormal behaviors and patterns that could signal that someone is trying to breach your security.
Consider the Cloud
Cloud-based, Software as a Service (SaaS) systems make the most sense for hotels without a full-time IT department that can be responsible for the phone system. Here, a reliable service can manage things remotely. This way, your system is always being monitored without requiring you to employ full-time IT staff.
There’s no reason why you should have to worry about the security of your hotel’s VoIP phone system. Let the pros at PhoneSuite get you set up with a reliable system and teach you more about network security today.