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Securing WVoIP

By Chris Crum

Wireless security software developer Columbitech recently announced wireless VPN support for securing wireless voice applications (wVoIP).

The release features security framework enhancements that provide protection for making reliable and robust VoIP calls.

Users who have wVoIP capabilities can securely check e-mail and voicemail, and have access to corporate files.

As CMP says,

"The most significant enhancement is support for Session Persistence. It is essential for wireless VoIP devices to maintain the session, even while wireless coverage is temporarily unavailable, so that the call will not be cut-off. Session Persistence ensures that secure calls will not be terminated even in the event of fluctuating signal strength or other network disruptions. The WVPN can resume interrupted calls placed at Wi-Fi hotspots over a public 2G or IP network."

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According to a press release, the solution also provides TCP connection multiplexing to prevent flooding the wireless link with redundant TCP retransmissions during handover. In short, the available bandwidth will be used to transport actual traffic instead of redundant TCP retransmissions. If the entire link capacity is utilized for retransmissions, TCP will eventually break down due to lack of new user data on the link. However, if all data were multiplexed over one TCP Session, there would be plenty of room for new data to reach the receiver and the applications would be more likely to survive a bad connection.

"When moving between WLAN and a packet switched public WAN, such as GPRS, the difference in bandwidth can vary by a ratio of 1000. Therefore, to adapt the speed to the road conditions, Columbitech uses TCP's built-in mechanisms for flow control, together with proprietary messages between client and server, to ensure that the call will not be cut off and to make network roaming as smooth as possible."

In order to offer the user the best performance possible, large data packets such as file transfers are compressed, typically doubling the perceived performance. Columbitech WVPN intelligently chooses when and what to compress in order to reduce the amount of data sent over the air. Since Columbitech Wireless VPN is designed to support adaptive compression, it is possible to distinguish between wVoIP traffic and data applications and apply appropriate actions.

"Data and voice convergence are very compelling from an application point of view, but very challenging from a security point of view," said Asa Holmstrom, President of Columbitech. "The same security threats that enterprises have been facing regarding data are now also a reality for voice. With the Columbitech Wireless VPN, enterprise users can protect both their voice and data applications and resources with a solution that is optimized for wireless networks."

As the press release says, many enterprises depend on real-time access to data and applications. The growing convergence of voice and data networks only exacerbates the security risks of cyber attacks. The Columbitech Wireless VPN has been designed to secure not only data, but also voice. VoIP networks are subject to a number of security weaknesses, such as virus attacks on IP PBXs, hackers breaking into VoIP gateways to make free calls and eavesdropping through VoIP phones. Columbitech's solution provides a secure solution to this problem.

About the Author:
Chris is a staff writer for WebProNews. Visit WebProNews for the latest ebusiness news.

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