RE: Converged Network Assessment


Thank you for the email, however, I did not post that original email. My email address was forged by an ex-employee of mine who has been doing this around the internet.

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 accordingly.

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 VoIP 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 quote.

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

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 network.

.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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