Frequently Asked Question

Securing your communications
Last Updated 3 years ago

With the IPA(2014) coming into force within the UK, all telephone calls over national carriers are recorded and archived. All data communication, encrypted or otherwise is stored and archived by national carrier networks. Any of this archived information is available to the UK Government and its contractors for interrogation and analysis.

This isn't necessarily bad, its an important step towards uncovering crime although with all the press attention any serious crime will undoubtably take countermeasures which makes much of it irrelevant.

Anyway, this article is simply to make you aware and to suggest methods to ensure your lawful business communication is secure, not specifically from the IPA but from everyone such as competitors.

GEN SAS - (Secure Access Service) promises end to end encryption that is secure, and whilst the encrypted data travelling over the public internet is subject to interception, the encryption algorithms ensure that it cannot be decrypted after interception.

GEN Email (GENX) is secure if:
  • You use webmail (http://www.genzone.net).
  • You install and use S/MIME or openPGP
  • You use TLS1.2 Encryption in your email client.
  • You only access it via GEN SAS
Otherwise, the weak point is the transfer between GEN's servers and your device(s) which can be transmitted in the clear and interception likely.

GEN Unified Telephony - Can provide end to end encryption of phone calls over our private network. This means that calls between extensions, whether in the office, mobiles with our client or extensions at home/remote offices are secure and encrypted, but calls to external numbers are not and this is because our encryption only goes as far as the PSTN network, after that its in the clear.

Private Cloud - Another method to secure business communication data is to use GEN Private Cloud services which has high level encryption between our servers and your clients. The weak point in this implementation is of course the client, which could be infected with a virus, backdoor, trojan, or lost physically. Strong antivirus takes care of some but using private cloud synchronisation on a laptop or mobile phone still presents a risk of physical loss.

Using GEN Drive/Office via a browser does remove the chances of physical loss and will ensure secure access especially when combined with GEN SAS for teleworkers, but if a file is saved locally by ANYONE with access then you've lost any advantage gained.

Key points to consider:

  • Any communication voice or data that travels over the internet is recorded.
  • Any data stored on a device that is not itself secure is a significant risk.
  • Any employee, trusted or not is always going to be a significant risk.
  • Industrial espionage is real and happens daily.
Speak to your GEN Account Manager directly if you want to know more.

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