Network Transformation – Five Key Considerations

By Alan Percy, CMO @TelcoBridges

As service providers begin planning their transition from aging and often end-of-life network equipment, there are many considerations that must be included in the decision process.  After many discussions with service providers in transition, we have distilled their thoughts down to five key considerations that should be raised when making vendor selections:

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Cloud Communications Infrastructure – the Right Business Model

by Alan Percy, CMO @TelcoBridges

The traditional model used to sell telecommunications infrastructure required a significant up-front capital expenditure (CAPEX) with life-long software and hardware maintenance expenses.  This is a real challenge for the emerging cloud communications service providers, many of which are starting from scratch.

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NEW: Solution Brief – TDM to IP Network Transformation with netsapiens

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TDM to IP Network Transformation
with netsapiens softswitch

Background

There are thousands of central offices serving small and rural communities around the globe that are still dependent on aging TDM central office switches.  These older switches are expensive to operate, difficult to maintain and many are reaching their product “end-of-life”. At the same time, many of these same service providers are looking to offer new high-value IP delivered services.

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Out-of-Band SHAKEN – Solving the adoption issues of STIR/SHAKEN

By Alan Percy, CMO @TelcoBridges

According to Metcalfe’s Law, “the effect of a telecommunications network is proportional to the square of the connected users”.   As service providers begin deploying STIR/SHAKEN, you can directly apply the law in determining the impact or effectiveness of protecting the integrity of the caller identity.  Without wide adoption, STIR/SHAKEN will have little value.

In the last few year there has been much progress on the legislative effort to mandate the implementation of STIR/SHAKEN, but the reality of doing so is much different.

Last month, we hosted a discussion with Jim Dalton from TransNexus on the challenges that smaller and mixed SIP/TDM service providers are having with STIR/SHAKEN Challengesimplementation of STIR/SHAKEN.  His first-hand experiences with service providers include:

  • The cost of upgrading their software and equipment to generate and verify SHAKEN identity tokens.
  • Tokens are blocked by softswitches or SBCs within the service provider network
  • Tokens that are lost in transport (on both SIP and TDM interconnects)
  • SIP over UDP packets become so large that they are fragmented
  • The destination softswitch or SBCs strip the SHAKEN identity tokens
  • Many rural and smaller service providers depend on TDM interconnects, unable to relay identity tokens

The result of any of the above is the same – an inability to pass or validate SHAKEN identity tokens, the service provider and all their subscribers are not part of the “square of the connected users”.   This means their subscriber’s calls may be blocked or ignored, and without callerID verification, makes them easy targets for spoofers and fraudsters.

So how do smaller and rural service providers participate in the STIR/SHAKEN solution?

Jim and his team have been working with the ATIS and others to devise an out-of-OOB SHAKEN Graphicband mechanism to deliver SHAKEN tokens via the Internet.   A seemingly simple solution to a complex problem, Out-of-Band SHAKEN uses HTTPS to deliver the identity token from the originating service provider’s Authentication Service (AS) to the terminating service provider’s Verification Service (VS).

Not only does this mechanism solve the issues with SIP softswitches, it also enables STIR/SHAKEN on TDM switches using media gateways.

There is much more detail covered in the recorded webinar in the TelcoBridges’ Video Library, along with past events on both STIR/SHAKEN and a range of other topics.

Both TelcoBridges and TransNexus have created a promotional bundle of services and software to help service providers implement Out-of-Band SHAKEN.   Request a consultation to learn how TelcoBridges and TransNexus can get your subscribers part of the “square of the connected users”.

NOW ON YOUTUBE: New Opportunities with Two Factor Authentication – A How To Webinar

Now available on YouTube, our “Build New Opportunities with 2FA – A How To” webinar where we explore Two Factor Authentication – more than just a means to confirm subscriber identities, 2FA is an opportunity for new revenue for service providers, offering it as a service to high-risk customers. Watch now here.

Going Global with UCaaS & CCaaS – Overcoming the Challenges

By Alan Percy, CMO @ TelcoBridges

Offering UCaaS and CCaaS services around the globe includes a number of business and technical challenges – finding consistent SIP Trunking is just one of them.

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uCPE and NFV Explained

by Alan Percy, CMO @ TelcoBridges

Universal CPE and Virtual Network Functions are seeing explosive growth in popularity with service providers, delivering SD-WAN and SIP Trunking to their multi-site enterprise customers.   Our most recent monthly webinar “uCPE and VNFs Explained” describes what’s under the covers and how they work.

Delivering services to retail stores, branch offices and other locations has traditionally resulted in a stack of networking devices in the facility network closet.  You know you’ve found the right closet when faced with a stack of a network termination devices (cable, ethernet or optical terminal), a router, a firewall, VPN security, and network switch, all fixed-function devices interconnected by a tangle of ethernet cables.  If you are lucky, the whole combination was installed by a pro using a 19 inch rack and carefully organized cables.  Most likely not.

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Stopping Telecom Fraud in its Tracks

By Alan Percy, CMO @TelcoBridges

According to the Communications Fraud Control Association (CFCA), telecom fraud has cost service providers and enterprises upwards of $22.9 Billion in lost revenue or subscriber losses.   Fraud is not just about lost revenue, but unfortunately, is all too often a source of illicit funding to international organized crime syndicates and terrorist groups.  Many service providers and enterprises never realize they have been the victim of a fraud scheme until the end of the monthly billing cycle.   By then it’s too late and the damage (or loss) is done.

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