What is a Hosted Phone System (VoIP) & How Does it Work?

3 min read. 

What is VoIP and how do these Phone Systems Work?

VoIP stands for voice over IP. Phone calls are made using the cloud (internet telephony) rather than the copper wire lines that made up the traditional telephone system. The UK is already transitioning to a digital communications infrastructure, making analogue obsolete by 2025. Therefore, VoIP systems are the sustainable choice for business communications. Yet this is not the only benefit hosted phones have for businesses.

Benefits of a VoIP Phone System 

The top features of VoIP include:

> Cost Savings

One of the biggest benefits businesses notice with VoIP are the huge savings. Call costs, especially for international calls, are considerably cheaper. This makes long-distance collaboration working a much more cost-effective option. A VoIP service also removes the need for equipment and maintenance. This is more so when businesses opt not to use a desktop phone, but use VoIP through laptops and mobile devices.

> Agility 

VoIP gives workforces the ability to work from anywhere, on any device. Using an application, a team member can make, receive, transfer calls on the go, at home, or at the office without impacting call quality. As long as the device has an internet connection, it can be used efficiently.

> Integration

VoIP integrates seamlessly into many CRM systems. This means that customer phone calls are logged in real-time rather than staff having to manually enter the data. Calls also become a much better experience for sales and support advisors to have access to customer profiles during the call.

> Security

Cyber security is a priority for all businesses now, regardless of size or industry. VoIP calls are encrypted to keep the data safe. Security updates are done on the platform making it very easy to keep it protected. As a cloud-based solution, workforces should understand the necessity of best password practices to keep VoIP accounts safe.

Is VoIP Easy to Use?

Very! Most business phone numbers can be transferred to the VoIP service so there is no need to change marketing materials and the website with a new number. Once the application is installed on devices, your workforce is ready to go. When working with Linten Technologies, we will ensure that the application is properly installed and configured for your devices. We will help staff to get accustomed to the new service and ensure they are using the application to its full potential.

Ready to move your telephone network to the cloud? Book in a time to chat with our IT specialists who will walk you through VoIP and get you started.

Frequently Asked Questions About Cloud Computing

Cloud technology has revolutionised businesses to meeting modern day workplace demands. Yet it can be confusing to know what cloud services and solutions are right for you business, and how to build an optimised and secure infrastrcuture. Here are some frequently asked questions the Linten Technologies team answer for customers wanting to understand cloud computing better.

What is Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing is the process of using a network of remote servers rather than on-premise servers to store, manage and process business data. This greatly reduces the amount of hardware needed to maintain the network as it is stored off-site.

What are the benefits of a cloud infrastructure?

Regardless of the size or industry of a business, there are many reasons why building a cloud infrastructure is beneficial. Cloud services offer availability of data and provide a platform for staff to collaborate, no matter where they are working from. Businesses can also benefit from the flexibility of cloud services and the ease of scalability to support workforce demands.

What is cloud-based telecommunications for business?

When faced with one of the biggest digital challenges se have seen in recent years, the benefits of cloud-based instant messaging and video calls have made a powerful contribution to how businesses operated away from the office. Microsoft Teams is a great example of how the cloud has provided a platform for modern day communications. The application can be used on any device making it agile, giving workforces freedom to work on the go.

Hosted phones (VoIP) have also been a go-to cloud-based telecommunication option for businesses for similar reasons. It offers agility for businesses meaning workforces can take, make, and transfer work calls from any device. This has meant businesses are now ditching the traditional analogue phones for VoIP. This transition also has huge cost savings with cheaper calls and less equipment required. Businesses who have not yet transitioned will need to by 2025 as the big UK switch from analogue to digital has already commenced.

Why should I work with a managed IT service provider when building my business's cloud infrastructure?

Many cloud services and solutions are available to but 'off-the-shelf', but they can be difficult to set-up and roll out to members of the team. Businesses who have little of no internal IT knowledge can experience multiple issues when cloud applications do not work effectively with with their hosted desktops or other applications. The more issues experience, the less productive your workforce can be.

Also, not correctly configuring cloud services can introduce multiple security vulnerabilities waiting to be exploited by cybercriminals. Working with cloud specialists like Linten Technologies will give you peace of mind that your cloud solutions are configured specifically for your business.

Are there more security risks when using cloud technology?

Cloud services increase the availability of data, making it a favoured option for businesses who require staff to use multiple devices, work remotely, or on the go. This availability does mean that if accounts are not properly secured, cybercriminals can compromise them leading to a data breach. Accounts can be susceptible to human negligence also if access is not monitored.

Businesses should not be put off using cloud services because of security risks. Instead, they should invest in securing them correctly. Working with a trusted IT partner to help build your cyber resilience will mean you are taking the right steps to keeping your data protected.

How can cloud storage help my business recover from a cyber-attack?

Cyber-attacks like ransomware can have devastating consequences on data availability. Cloud storage means important business data is stored off-site in multiple data centres. This provides assurance that data is accessible when needed, and so can help businesses to recover more quickly.

Your cloud technology specialists

Want to learn more about how to utilise the power of cloud computing in your organisation? We will take the time to understand your current IT set-up and walk you though cloud options that will improve efficiency and security. Book in a time to chat below or contact us here.

What are the Security Risks of Cloud Computing?

3 min read

Cloud-based services such as hosted desktops and VoIP have soared in popularity over the past few years as they offer scalability and agility to workforces. With the move to remote and flexible working, file storage and sharing using multiple devices is also growing in demand. This requires data to be readily accessible. However, with any new or evolving technology, new security risks are introduced with vulnerabilities that are waiting to be exploited by cybercriminals. Businesses increasing their cloud usage need to consider the cloud computing security risks involved and put measures in place to prevent cyber-attacks.

Two Common Cloud Infrastructure Security Threats

> Compromised Accounts

Storing data in the cloud rather than on-premise means that accounts can be accessed remotely, meaning cybercriminals can attempt to gain access no matter where they are and where your business in located. Therefore, taking action to secure cloud accounts should be a priority to prevent data loss or exploitation.

Having a password policy in place means staff will need to have unique, strong passwords for cloud services. Setting up two-factor or multi-factor authentication is a great way of adding extra layers of protection to accounts which will improve your cloud infrastructure's resilience against data breaches.

> Insider Threats

When thinking about cloud security threats, businesses often make the mistake of solely focusing on external attacks. Insider threats can result from human negligence or disgruntled employees who can expose or damage data. A way to manage this threat is by managing who has access to cloud applications and services within your business. Doing regular audits to see what employees have access to is a great way to securing data and removing user access when it is no longer needed.

> Misconfiguration

Cloud infrastructure is designed to be easily accessible and allow co-workers to store and share files with ease. This can mean that data sharing can be hard to control. Reliance on the security controls from multiple cloud service providers without understanding their strengths and weaknesses can mean businesses are at risk of a data breach without realising. Working with an outsourced trusted IT provider who will secure and pro-actively monitor your systems is a great way of ensuring your cloud accounts are properly configured for your business at all times.

> Compliance

Businesses have a duty of care to meet data protection requirements. Depending on the industry, businesses have to meet controls set by standards such as Cyber Essentials Plus and ISO 27001. Data breaches and cyber-attacks can have devastating impacts on your business's reputation and lead to loss of custom.

Cloud Security Benefits

> Incident Recovery

Using only local hardware devices for data storage does limit remote unauthorised access as a risk, but this security benefit is greatly outweighed by the risks it creates. Storage devices include on-premise servers, USBs, and laptops are all susceptible to damage or theft. Therefore it is not a suitable data loss recovery control on its own, but it is an option to compliment cloud storage. Storing data in the cloud means that is it is backed-up in multiple data centres, meaning if one data suffers from an incident such as a fire, your data is still available.

> Ransomware Recovery

One of the biggest threats to businesses at present is ransomware. This is a type of cyber-attack where the cybercriminals use malicious software to encrypt data on devices and networks, preventing user access. A demand is made to release the data but there is no guarantee it will be given back. Therefore, having data backup on the cloud is a way of recovering much quicker.

Cloud Technology Specialists for Businesses

As cloud technology specialists, the team at Linten Technologies are always available to help you utilise and secure cloud services including Microsoft Azure and Microsoft 365 Business. Book in a time to chat below and we will get to know your business and walk you through cloud and security services that are right for your business.