Defense certifies voice over IP solution

Voice over IP technology took a step toward acceptance for military command and control applications when the Defense Department certified that solutions from Basking Ridge, N.J.-based Avaya Inc. met security requirements.

The Defense Information Systems Agency's Joint Interoperability Test Command at Ft. Huachuca, Ariz., tested Avaya's IP telephony software and servers and certified that they were interoperable with the government's Defense Switched Network. Such certification is mandated by Defense Department policy as a way to ensure equipment connected to the network includes the security and operational features the government requires.

The Avaya solutions received certification in three functional categories: PBX2, PBX1 and the more rigorous, small end office (SMEO) category. These government classifications refer to specific military and security functions required by most military sites. SMEO certification requires 99.999 percent reliability, duplicated processors and no single point of failure in order to support critical command and control missions.

"Now U.S. government locations worldwide can take advantage of the cost and operational efficiencies IP telephony offers, while preserving the security, reliability and interoperability that are imperative to their operations," said Lisa Crisp, vice president of Avaya's Government Solutions business.

The Avaya telephony solutions tested by the JITC included the company's media servers, gateways and Avaya Communication Manager 2.0 telephony software. Together they can scale up to 36,000 endpoints on a single system with telephony-grade reliability, the company.

Avaya's IP telephony solutions incorporate several levels of security, including multilevel precedence and preemption and advanced encryption standard. MLPP allows key personnel to override other system traffic in times of emergency so that the most critical calls go across the network first. AES includes algorithms to protect IP voice conversations and signaling information as they travel on the network.

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