Combating Spam with your VoIP System

Combating Spam with your VoIP System

When you hear the word spam, does it make you cringe? Have you, like most people, received spam in the form of an email or voicemail that was unwanted and unsolicited? Do you wish you could get rid of spam forever? If so, you’re not alone. Spam is something most of us despise. Besides being annoying, it can disrupt your work, especially if you rely on your phone and computer to conduct business. For those who use VoIP for a business communications system, here are some steps you can take to combat spam.

SPIT – SPam over Internet Telephony

Spam that gets sent over a VoIP network has been coined SPIT. Seeing as how most people detest spam, the name seems appropriate. No one wants spit on their computer or phone. SPIT differs from spam in the way it affects phone calls and voicemails as opposed to emails.

Why VoIP Hates SPIT

  1. Large numbers of SPIT calls could tie up phone lines, making it difficult for customers to contact the business.
  2. Repeated SPIT calls can negatively affect the morale of employees that are responsible for answering these calls.
  3. Setting up protocol to deal with SPIT could be time consuming or expensive.
  4. SPIT could be used to distract a business so hackers can cause more damage.

Combating SPIT

Methods for combating traditional email spam don’t work with SPIT because it affects your system in different ways. Instead of filling your email inbox with junk, it ties up your phone lines and fills your voicemail inboxes with unsolicited phone messages. You can’t simply filter unwanted incoming calls as easily as you can filter emails. By the time you answer the call and determine that it’s SPIT, you’ve already been interrupted.

The most common VoIP features that help with SPIT are call block, anonymous call block, and international call block. These features are generally free with VoIP service, and can block a good percentage of unwanted calls. You can also utilize white listing and blacklisting whenever possible. These may not always keep you one step ahead of potential SPIT, but they can certainly help.

 

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