Cisco confirms ability to spy on remote calls with VoIP

Also in October, two security experts at hacker conference ToorCon9 in San Diego hacked into their hotel's corporate network using a Cisco VoIP phone

Cisco confirmed it is possible to eavesdrop on remote conversations using Cisco VoIP phones. In its security response, Cisco says: "an attacker with valid Extension Mobility authentication credentials could cause a Cisco Unified IP Phone configured to use the Extension Mobility feature to transmit or receive a Real-Time Transport Protocol (RTP) audio stream."

Cisco adds that Extension Mobility authentication credentials are not tied to individual IP phones and that "any Extension Mobility account configured on an IP phone's Cisco Unified Communications Manager/CallManager (CUCM) server can be used to perform an eavesdropping attack."

The technique was described by Telindus researcher Joffrey Czarny at HACK.LU 2007 in Luxembourg in October.

Cisco has published some workarounds to this problem in its security response.

Also in October, two security experts at hacker conference ToorCon9 in San Diego hacked into their hotel's corporate network using a Cisco VoIP phone.

The hackers, John Kindervag and Jason Ostrom said they were able to access the hotel's financial and corporate network and recorded other phone calls, according to a blog on Wired.com.

The hackers used penetration tests propounded by a tool called VoIP Hopper, which mimics the Cisco data packets sent at three minute intervals and then trades a new Ethernet interface, getting the PC - which the hackers switched in place of the hotel phone - into the network running the VoIP, according to the blog post.

The Avaya configuration is superior to Cisco, according to the hackers, because you have to send requests beyond a sniffer. Although it can be breached the same way, by replacing the phone with a PC.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Linda Leung

Network World
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?