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Is Security the Only Reason You Still Have a Landline Telephone?

Posted by Allison Boccamazzo on July 21, 2016 at 11:19 AM

A 2015 survey conducted by Statista found that 50 percent of U.S. households still have an operating landline telephone. Conversely, more than half of adults aged 18-44 say they live in a wireless-only household. Similarly, many businesses are transitioning away from traditional landline (i.e. copper, analog, TDM) networks to more advanced, scalable and affordable technology—like VoIP, which converts audio into digital data and sends it via broadband Internet (fiber optic, DSL or cable).

For years, businesses have been implementing VoIP as a more affordable, convenient and reliable alternative to landlines. Comparative analysis, for example, shows VoIP costing about $20-35/month compared to $30-60/month, while offering users no shortage of unique calling features and customizable functionalities due to today’s wide range of VoIP providers (compared to only a handful, if that, of landline carriers).

Landline_telephone.pngFor the dwindling percentage of businesses that still operate landlines, security tends to be top-of-mind. While it’s true that landlines are still one of today’s most secure communication methods, landline-operating businesses shouldn’t make security their end-all when it comes to which path to take. In actuality, landlines can be just as easily compromised by attackers, and VoIP is safer than ever when taking proper security measures.

Let’s explore further…

For landline businesses, the idea of a phone connection with the same level of security as web traffic can be unsettling. At the same time, however, there are several ways that a traditional phone call can be hacked into—from something as simple as listening into the conversation on another extension, to eavesdropping into the call at the telephone switch or by using specialized equipment. It may be difficult, but landline calls can even be compromised by tapping into the main trunk lines.

Meanwhile, it’s true that IP data has the added risk of being compromised virtually anywhere along its transmission path; however, this risk pertains strictly to VoIP to VoIP calls—that is, calls that never touch the public switched telephone network. It’s important to remember that VoIP calls to landline numbers are no more or less secure than any other telephone call. Furthermore, as long as businesses ensure end-to-end call encryption, their VoIP to VoIP calls will be perfectly secure.

All in all, there’s really no reason to avoid VoIP due to security fears. With research showing that the global VoIP services market is expected to soar from $83 billion in 2015 to $140 billion by 2021, the only thing businesses should be afraid of is not striking while the iron is at its hottest.

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Tags: Telephony, VoIP

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