“Microsoft, Google, Slack, Zoom et al struggling to deal with a spike in remote tools thanks to coronavirus”, reads a headline from tech news outlet, The Register. This came on March 12— just when companies in various European countries and most of the US started an all but mandatory work-from-home policy. More than a week after the initial tidal wave of users hit the big, centralized unified communications and collaboration (UCC) solutions, some of those are still crashing.

And then what? On March 18, Cisco revealed they were patching their Cisco Webex Meetings software after attackers were allowed to “exploit vulnerabilities by sending a malicious ARF or WRF file to a user through a link or email attachment and persuading the user to open the file on the local system.” Successful exploitations could allow those attackers to execute arbitrary code on the affected systems with the admin privileges of the targeted user. This occurred just as workers in Latin America started with home office. If UCC has a time to shine, then this is it.

After all, remote working has been commonplace in offices for years now, with reports even claiming that two thirds of the global workforce do home office at least once a week.

Following the urgent recommendations of the World Health Organization, in order to mitigate the global effects of the coronavirus disease, companies around the world required millions of people to work from home. After all, remote working has been commonplace in offices for years now, with reports even claiming that two thirds of the global workforce do home office at least once a week. Therefore, why is it that when we finally need to rely on unified communication in a moment of crisis, it constantly fails? Even if the faulty service was reported only from a minority of providers, those few bad apples are spoiling the reputation of the whole barrel.

There is no doubt about the benefits of unified communications and collaboration (UCC) in times like these. Businesses being able to keep the wheels turning while, at the same time, allowing their most important asset –their people– to maintain a safe distance from one another, is one of the core advantages of UCC in the coronavirus crisis. Nevertheless, UCC providers must be up to the challenge of offering a reliable, secure and trustworthy platform for their users in order for their solutions to work properly.

If UCC has a time to shine, then this is it.

We at ECT are convinced local carriers have the opportunity to offer what no global company can offer at this time: a UCC service tailored to the needs of local markets; one that stores personal data within that same country, and that guarantees service to every user, even if they are all working from home simultaneously. And we can prove it by taking a look at our customers’ services: Fully operational and fully available, even now. Because, regardless of the reasons for failure, a patchy service is always unreliable and there is no trial period long enough to make up for the man-hours lost during down time.

ECT believes carriers are of the utmost importance not only to day-to-day communications but to extraordinary situations and emergencies like the one we are currently facing. We will discuss in a later post how they can help both with value-added services only available through them, and by providing complete solutions unavailable through OTT providers. If you are interested in learning more, we will be glad to hear from you.

ECT

Author ECT

ECT is Europe’s leading communications software company. With our virtualized INtellECT® Low-Code Application Platform, innovative service applications and our Joint Agile Product Development Program, major communications service providers worldwide realize their products with minimal costs and the shortest possible time-to-market.

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