RE: Converged Network Assessment

I think one of the additional implications here is the realization that VoIP
and multi-media will introduce new issues to the security community and
should be factored into risk assessments. Pen tests should be adjusted

Several simple observations on the convergence impact:

1) first, convergence is going to have a lot to do with integrating VoIP -
here we should note that general managers are traditionally more concerned
about voice privacy than email privacy (while most data folks know there's a
lot of critical information in email, mgmt cares more about confidentiality
on their voice communications) - this is likely to lead to wide-spread
encryption of voice traffic which means it's an ideal convert channel since
filters can't inspect encrypted data flows so look for malicious use of
encrypted UDP packets
2) VoIP requires two ports (each is unidirectional) for conversations - some
firewalls or perimeter defenses talk about pin holes being opened for voice;
don't you love it - a hole in the perimeter but it's only a pin prick
2) acceptable, or functional latency is very different for voice and live
video than for email or browsing; this means that many exploits that might
cause a delay can actually produce an outage in the converged network
3) power dependency is an important issue since the phone grid traditionally
carried it's own power and that's not easy to do with VoIP
4) location awareness is an issue as we see in the FCC battle over E911 for
5) spoofing of caller ID is made quite trivial in VoIP
6) Convergence also commonly includes wireless and new client form factors
like cell phones and hybrid PDAs

These are not all direct issues for a pen test but risk assessment and
planning should address these and far more.

Each new technology we deploy opens up new vulnerabilities and it's our jobs
to be in front of these.

Convergence is far more than market hype - it's going to bring lots of new
vulnerabilities and will require new, enhanced defenses.

And, as I've said to vendors for 30 years "it's got to be taught before it
will be bought" so it's got to start with education.

-----Original Message-----
From: Bob Radvanovsky [mailto:rsradvan@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
Sent: Sunday, February 05, 2006 3:12 PM
To: joseph@xxxxxxxxx; pen-test@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Re: Converged Network Assessment

Actually, it could go either way. The latest thing within the IT and
security industries is "standardization". For the security industries, this
means converging physical, cyber and policy management security together.
For the IT industries, this means converging telephone (VoIP), video, and
networking together.

This makes sense that what they're offering is a complete suite of
networking assessments for telephony, video and network (data). They're
taking advantage of the "convergence movement" lately, and utilizing it as a
method of a one-stop-shopping for assessing ALL technologies under ONE

Makes sense, doesn't it?

Bob Radvanovsky, CISM, CIFI, REM, CIPS
"knowledge squared is information shared"
rsradvan (at) | |
(630) 673-7740 | (412) 774-0373 (fax)

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----- Original Message -----
From: joseph@xxxxxxxxx
To: pen-test@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Converged Network Assessment

I am newbie in the field of security, and stumbled across a security
advertising that they conduct Converged Network Assessments.
As they describe the assessment focuses on both the voice and the data
network, in order to expose any new security holes created by a converged

.The assessment covers:
- External Security Assessment
- Internal Security Assessment
- PBX Assessment
- Adjunct Assessment
- Wireless Assessment
- Bluetooth Assessment
- Rogue Modem Assessment
- IDS Assessment
- SAN's Assessment
- VoIP Assessment
- Penetration testing

So can someone provide me a honest answer to what a Converged Network
Assessment is, it sounds like a lot of marketing speak.


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