Optimizing security for your UCaaS solutions

July 19, 2023
Author: Neal Marksberry
Blog | Communications | Digital Workspace | Security

The rising digital workplace must merge UcaaS and collaboration and security solutions, but without proper implementation, your organization may be overlooking potential vulnerabilities.

The security landscape of the digital workplace

As the paradigm of work has permanently shifted, hybrid and remote work are here to stay. Even companies that have returned to “normal” operations face enormous pressure to offer hybrid options. The need for cloud telephony and collaboration tools has exploded in this environment. Various Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) solutions have evolved to meet demand.

UCaaS platforms effectively unite collaboration tools such as Microsoft Teams Voice or Webex Calling by Cisco with cloud-based telephony. It’s safe to say that, eventually, every industry will run its communications through a unified solution that utilizes a cloud collaboration environment. This development seems to be the progression arc of modern communications technology, and it’s overwhelmingly popularity among employees in every industry.

But with the emergence of UCaaS as a primary form of corporate communications, the demand for advanced security measures has increased. The increased reliance on cybersecurity insurance, HIPAA, and other regulatory requirements demands data is protected, driving the push for enhanced security practices. Additionally, the trend to merge UCaaS with Contact Center as a Service (CCaaS) platforms means that security controls must be robust and flexible, as well as deployable across multiple environments and platforms.

This post will briefly examine the technologies driving the digital workplace and delve into the security threats to UCaaS and the security tools evolving to face them. 

Technologies driving the digital workplace

UCaaS solutions aren’t the only tech advances impacting the future of remote work. Other influential technologies include:

Learn more: SD-WAN and NaaS from CBTS pays off for alternative financial services companies

Threats and challenges of UCaaS security

Security is one of the chief benefits of embracing a Unified Communications system. On-premises data centers require enormous upkeep—patching, firmware updates, upgrades, replacements, and firewall maintenance. UCaaS shifts the burden of security to the managed service provider who holds expertise in maintaining security.

The move to managed services isn’t found only in collaboration or telephony, but in all sorts of workloads and Software as a Service (SaaS) applications. Organizations want the same benefits of on-premises equipment without overloading their in-house IT team.

Even though cloud-based infrastructure and applications are more secure than their on-prem legacy counterparts, the move to the Cloud brings its own set of security challenges. The core threats to the digital workplace are the exploding complexity of hybrid networks and the increased sophistication of cybercriminals. Remote work multiplies the number of devices, connections, and applications interacting with your business network. Each user represents a potential security weakness.

Additionally, video conferencing and collaboration tools have their unique security concerns. Threats like “zoom bombing” and sophisticated eavesdropping techniques mean data, recordings, and connections should be encrypted end-to-end. 

Also read: Nine compelling benefits of a CBTS managed cloud environment

UCaaS security solutions

Next-gen security tools

The next generation of security tools, particularly SSE/SASE, is about delivering cloud firewall services, CASB, ZTNA, and cloud secure gateway services to any device. The shift in thinking is from building a “wall” around the organization to building one around each user. SASE is necessary in addition to Microsoft Security Protocols (native in MS Teams, MS Suite, etc.), SaaS, and custom-built apps.

Other emerging technologies include:

  • EDR (Endpoint Detection and Response): Next-gen, AI-powered antivirus platforms that flag irregular user activity in location, action, or time.
  • CASB (Cloud access security broker): Multi-cloud API flow monitoring and threat detection that merges with data loss prevention (DLP) tools.
  • Device identification and management: Gives admins greater control and visibility into the devices connected to their network at any given time.
  • Secure gateway: Restricts access to dangerous sites and malware.
  • Patching as a Service and vulnerability scans: IT admins push out patches through the network. CBTS can refine the process and boost patching success rates through testing.

Additionally, CBTS deploys these tools by following emerging security concepts like zero trust networking access (ZTNA) which mitigates risk by limiting access to only what’s necessary for each user.

Seamless integration

Many organizations lack an appropriate number of solutions to defend digital processes properly. However, the inverse is equally true for many companies. As more security tools emerge, an IT department may suddenly find itself managing a portfolio of five, six, seven, or more platforms. Tool sprawl is a challenge for even the most seasoned IT professional. In response, industry-leading companies like Palo Alto and Cisco are pushing to condense and merge their security offerings.

Working with a managed services partner like CBTS eliminates this issue. CBTS will partner with your organization to help select the right solution for your business and manage that solution—all while serving as the primary contact.

Single-pane-of-glass controls

The need for simplified controls also accompanies the push for integration. Vendors are working to make this a reality for their companies by creating an easy-to-use dashboard that controls multiple tools or works across vendor platforms. CBTS can design custom dashboards to help you manage multiple tools and vendors.

AI and machine learning

Advances in AI are fueling faster threat monitoring, identification, and remediation. Machine learning tools navigate the growing complexity of UCaaS solutions and the rest of the digital workplace to root out developing malware threats in near real-time.

Compliance management

Compliance movements like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) stateside are forcing IT leaders to rethink compliance management. Working with a managed service provider like CBTS removes stress by putting the onus of keeping up with evolving legislation and cybersecurity standards on the service provider.

Also read: Data protection and managed backup for secure cloud organizations

Selecting a digital workplace security partner

As discussed in this post, it’s only a matter of time before most companies must design and deploy a UCaaS solution to manage their communications effectively and ensure an efficient digital workplace. IT leaders should select managed service providers with broad shoulders. Why not partner with a managed services provider that can implement workplace solutions while ensuring maximum security through next-gen tools and emerging security concepts such as ZTNA?

CBTS offers full-spectrum solutions that support each phase of your digital transformation journey. Get in touch today to learn how CBTS UCaaS solutions and security measures can help your company thrive.

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