In the past, unified communications systems were largely seen as high-tech luxuries, reasonable only for international corporations and the like. Now, they are more commonly viewed as basic business tools, and those organizations that have yet to embrace these resources are playing catchup.
As the leaders of these late-adopter companies begin their searches for unified messaging systems in earnest, they need to follow best practices. Among the most important of these is paying close attention to security matters.
Security is a frequently overlooked yet essential factor in this area. Usually, the main emphasis during a UC search falls on questions like reliability, integration capabilities, functionality and the like. But a high-quality UC system will effectively connect everyone throughout a company in a wide range of ways, from file- and screen-sharing to instant messaging and beyond. This means that if one person's machine is compromised, the whole network will be in severe danger of a hostile takeover or data breach.
Such an intrusion is far from unlikely. Hackers and other cybercriminals are always on the lookout for opportunities to gain valuable corporate information, and the growing number of interconnected devices on a corporate network creates numerous contact points. This is especially true for those businesses looking to UC as a means of enabling remote work or mobile device use.
No company should rely on its UC system for protection. However, choosing a security-focused UC offering can provide a key additional layer of defense.
Not every UC vendor makes security a priority, instead focusing on delivering cost-savings or offering as many channels as possible. To maximize value while also limiting risk, decision-makers need to seek out UC service providers that are able and willing to meet their security needs.