Converged networks give IT administrators security concerns

The report, which examined the network security habits of executives and workers in more than 50 countries, was conducted last summer and included interviews with 35 Canadian executives. Forty-seven per cent of respondents said they had opened e-mail from an unknown sender and 27 per cent commit their passwords to paper.“Education has to be a big part of any defence strategy,” said Richard Blacklock, director of business strategy and development for AT&T Global Services Canada.
Overall, executives said they were worried about viruses and worms, hackers and “accidental damage,” in that order. They also rated security as the main concern when moving to converged IP networks, yet they are making that move in droves. According to the study, 62 per cent of Canadian respondents said they expect to have implemented IP networks within three years.
The advantages associated with converged networks are a temptation for users, said Mary Kirwan, principal of Toronto-based security consulting firm Headfry Inc.
“I think there’s a lot of enthusiasm for (converged networks) because of the vast cost savings, but there may be trade-offs,” she said. “I think a lot of these companies need to do a risk assessment to see that they even understand the issues.”
Those issues include spam, denial of service attacks and viruses making their way into voice applications running over IP networks.

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