October Touchdown Task: Phone System Review

This month’s Touchdown Task is to take an hour and give your phone system security a quick review. PBX hacking, toll fraud and VoIP attacks remain fairly common and many organizations don’t often visit the security of their phone systems. Thus, a quick review might find some really interesting things and go a long way to avoiding waste, fraud and abuse.

If you have a traditional PBX/analog phone system, here are some ideas for you to check out.

If you have a VoIP-based system, here are some checks to consider. (Note that this is a STIG in a  zip file). 

Generally speaking, you want to check passwords on voice mail boxes, give a look over to make sure that the phone system has some general logging/alerting capability and that it is turned on. Pay attention to out going dialing rules and test a few to make sure arbitrary calls can’t be made remotely. On the personnel side, make sure someone is actively monitoring the phone system, auditing the bill against “normal” and adding/deleting entries in the system properly.

Give the phone system a bit of your time. You never know what you might learn, and you might avoid tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars in fraud and abuse.

Thanks for reading and I hope you are enjoying the season! 

Don’t Forget About VoIP Exposures and PBX Hacking







I was browsing my usual data alerts for the day and ran into this set of data. It motivated me to write a quick blog post to remind folks that VoIP scans and probes are still going on out there in the wild.

These days, with all of the attention to mass compromises, infected web sites and stolen credit card data, voice systems can sometimes slip out of sight.

VoIP compromises and intrusions remain a threat. There are now a variety of tools, exploits and frameworks built for attacking VoIP installations and they are a target for both automated tools and manual hacking. Access to VoIP systems can provide a great platform for intelligence, recon, industrial espionage and traditional toll fraud.
While VoIP might be the state of the art for phone systems today, there are still plenty of traditional PBX, auto-attendant and dial-up voicemail systems around too. Now might be a good time to review when those systems were last reviewed, audited or pen-tested. Traditional toll fraud is still painful to manage and recover from, so it’s probably worth spending a few cycles on reviewing these devices and their security postures. 
Let us know if your organization could use assistance with these items or with hardening voice systems, implementing detection techniques for them or otherwise increasing voice system security.