Yesterday, after not receiving any feedback from anyone at Ooma after my last blog post, I decided to instigate an online chat with their support site.
I first got what I assume is a level one support person. After I started asking my questions, he quickly transferred me to an engineer.
Agent (Vincent): “Helllo Jason, My Name is Vince. How can I help you?” Techcraver: “hey Vincent. I have a question. I have ooma invites to give out, but my family members are wondering: is a PSTN number required to use ooma?” Agent (Vincent): “It is not required, but it’s more for backup.”
Then I started to ask the key question, about security:
Agent a: “so you are concerned about the last leg on PSNT in term of security?” techcraver: “pretty much.” Agent a: “from your questions, I can see you understand our DT technology” Techcraver: “I’m a VoIP junkie” Agent a: “so while the call travels via IP, it’s encrypted, but once you are on a PSTN, on the box side, we have the ability to detect phone tapping” Techcraver: “this is my main fear, someone using one of these : http://www.compusa.com/products /product_info.asp?product_code =282490&ref=froogle&pfp =froogle&cm_ven=froogle&cm_cat =&cm_pla=&cm_ite=feed“ 0 Agent a: “this said, some one sitting outside you home with crocodile clip can connect just like they can on traditional phone lines” Agent a: “give me a sec to look at that link..” Techcraver: “it’s just a phone splitter” Techcraver: “so what’s the recourse if you detect splitting/tapping” Agent a: “yes.. but ooma is still more secure than your regular phone line..” Agent a: “even more so if both sides have ooma, because the calls will be encrypted and decrypted right at the box”Agent a: “if we detect tapping we simply disconnect the call..”
But what about my question regarding if a bomb threat (or threatening phone number) is called in from the ooma network and my ooma box is the node that the call is terminated from?
Techcraver: “what about this scenerio. What happens if my ooma box is a ‘node’ and my node is the gateway for a bomb threat that is called in. They trace the call and see that it ‘came from’ my number. then what?” Agent a: “ok so first, any call that is terminated by an ooma box was originated by an ooma box, this being the case, we know where the call originated from.” Agent a: “we keep track of all calls made to and from an ooma box” Agent a: “so if a bomb threat is made through your ooma box, we have the callers name and address.” Agent a: “Also more than likely, we’ll permanently disable that ooma box.” Agent a: “the one used to originate the call of course, not the one used to route the call. I hope this answers your question.” Techcraver: “ok. I can just see alot to go through for the node owner. That is, cops banging on my door – having to explain what ooma is; so on and so forth.” Agent a: “cops would not come to your door” Agent a: “the FCC would call us to get the trace of the call.” Agent a: “then they would give the name and location of the caller to the proper authorities” Techcraver: “ok. very cool. I appreciate your time. these are the questions my friends and family have asked as I’ve share the ooma idea with them”
So in all, I feel that I advanced toward an answer to my questions, but I still don’t feel 100% secure in recommending Ooma as a telephony solution for anyone that calls on my opinion.
What do you think?Â Please leave a comment.