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Phone system: Sip trunking, the ultimate phone system?

Reading time: 2 mins

Sip trunking (Session Initiation Protocol) is one standard for a type of Voice-over-IP internet connection allowing the connection of a private branch exchange system, or PBX system, to the internet. The only difference with traditional phone systems is that instead of using a traditional phone line to connect the enterprise phone system with the rest of the world, Sip systems rely on an internet connection. But this simple difference allows many advanced features and benefits, even if this solution is not without its flaws.

 Sip trunking

Understanding Sip trunking

Sip trunking takes advantage of a connection to the internet and packet technology to allow an enterprise network to communicate with the rest of the world. Many features are made available by this technology standard.

How Sip trunking works

To make SIP trunking works, this telecommunications technology requires an IP PBX connected to all internal end users (user agent clients), a gateway, and an Internet telephony services provider. Typically, proxy servers are used to make direct connection between user agent clients, using a... precise session initiation protocol.

The trunk, or “line” can be dedicated or shared, virtual or physical.  This is because Sip trunking providers, who all need dedicated circuits, operate under different models. Some use lines under leasing arrangements, some channel Sip trunk in conjunction with other services, and some have created an underlying network architecture solely for the purpose of delivering Sip trunking.

Available features

Users of this telecommunications technology enjoy the following features:

- they can call and be called, including long distance calls;

- they can make emergency calls;

- they can use desktop and mobile phones;

- they can blend phone calls and multimedia tasks like browsing the internet,

- they can send e-mails and text messages.

Advantages and disadvantages

Sip trunking offers many benefits, which are hardly offset by inherent disadvantages.

Advantages of Sip trunking

In fact, this telecommunications technology offers all the benefits of leased lines - and more. Advantages include:

- cheaper communications including free on-net calls;

- multimedia communications and unified communications;

- the possibility to choose hundreds of geographical numbers for your business, regardless of actual physical location, and to change these numbers on a per-call basis,

- and to operate thousands of simultaneous calls using these numbers.


However, this standard also has a few drawbacks:

- providers leasing the trunks from other telecommunications operators may not guarantee stable levels of service;

- users are still exposed to cyber security threats such as Layer 7 DDoS attacks. Distribute Denial of Service refers to joint attacks of dozens or hundreds of computers on the network accessing the service at the same time to simply overwhelm it and prevent legitimate users from placing their own requests.

Constant monitoring of Sip traffic is therefore advised.