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Vendors tackle IP telephony security and management

Apr 05, 20063 mins

* IP telephony security and management product announcements at VoiceCon

Today, we’ll highlight two product announcements made at the recent VoiceCon event that focus on solving the top two key roadblocks for a successful IP telephony deployment – security and management.

The first announcement, from Spanlink, is a product that the company claims is a “call recording and evaluation software product that optimizes team performance in virtual customer interaction networks.” The company also announced products in its Spanlink AnswerCenter family, which “automate multichannel question answering through natural language understanding.”

The products are designed to improve management for contact centers that are built around virtual teams that may not operate in a traditional centralized contact center environment. The company said that the key features include:

* Voice and screen recording on the agent desktop.

* Supervisor/manager evaluation tools.

* Compliance archival of key information to open systems.

* Speech analytics at the edge.

* Independent operation of desktop components.

* Flexibility for adding new agents through a software push.

“First call resolution remains an elusive goal for most contact centers,” said Sheila McGee-Smith, president and principal analyst of McGee-Smith Analytics. “A tool such as Spanlink AnswerCenter can dramatically improve the ability of an enterprise or organization to provide consistent responses to customer queries regardless of the method by which a question is asked. Customers can choose to speak to an agent, use the company’s Web site, or speech self-service, and the contact center will be providing a consistently accurate response.”

The second announcement and demonstration that caught Larry’s attention at VoiceCon was Sipera’s IPCS 310 system. The product “monitors VoIP traffic, detects anomalies in traffic and call patterns, and identifies threats, to protect end-user devices and network infrastructures against attacks, misuse and service abuse.” The product is designed to protect “applications against [denial-of-service/distributed DoS] attacks, stealth, spoofing, and VoIP spam, while allowing legitimate calls to be processed at the same time,” Sipera President and CEO Seshu Madhavapeddy said.

The product’s design helps it avoid becoming a point-of-failure in the network that is subject to attack. One impressive feature is that the device includes “behavior learning algorithms for traffic and subscriber call patterns,” so it automatically “detects anomalies, verifies the [calling party] source [thereby] reducing false positive and negatives and offers automatic and user controlled handling of VoIP spam.” The product is available now.

Our analysis: These two product announcements were among many showing that IP telephony has moved beyond standard calling features and that third party developers can are quickening the pace of value-added feature advancement.