Updates & Notifications.

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RECENT NOTIFICATIONS: 

December 14, 2021

Recently, you may have seen widespread news coverage of a new zero-day vulnerability in the Log4j java library. Log4j is a development tool used to log data within an application. Attempts have been made by cybercriminals to exploit this flaw that exists in some versions of Log4j. This flaw allows the cybercriminal to gain unauthenticated access to an organization’s servers. Several businesses have reported that they have been compromised. We have investigated and tested our services and found no indication of any unauthorized access to CallTower’s systems. 

There is no action for you to take at this time. 

We have reviewed and tested all products that are provided directly by CallTower and have found a small number of systems with some exposure to this vulnerability, which have all been addressed with a software patch or configuration change. After testing, CallTower has found no remaining exposure to this vulnerability in our network or systems. We have also reviewed all access and found no indication of any unauthorized access to CallTower systems. 

CallTower continues to work with our vendors to ensure our customers are protected from this threat with services provided in part or in whole through our partners. To date, we have found no outstanding exposure to this vulnerability through services provided by CallTower’s service partners. 

As always, we will continue to monitor our systems and platforms to mitigate security vulnerabilities and will update you as circumstances warrant. 

August 18, 2021

On the morning of August 17, 2021, CallTower customers utilizing Teams Direct Routing services experienced inbound call failures and intermittent outbound call failures. CallTower Engineering immediately engaged and identified that calls to Direct Routing customers received no response from Microsoft’s Session Border Controllers (SBCs). Microsoft was not returning SIP signaling error messages and stopped responding altogether. Microsoft’s administration portal showed no errors.

CallTower opened a case with Microsoft Premier Support to identify why CallTower stopped receiving responses from Microsoft’s SBCs. After troubleshooting and escalation through Microsoft, Microsoft’s engineers identified a license issue that resulted in the suspension of services to CallTower’s Carrier Tenant. The license issue was resolved, and services were restored in the early evening of August 17, 2021.

A Carrier Tenant is the tenant that contains the SIP trunks where calls are delivered between Microsoft Teams and a carrier’s voice network. CallTower’s Carrier Tenant was set up in August of 2018 consistent with the specifications as published by Microsoft. According to Microsoft’s published documentation, tenant licenses could be removed after the initial setup was complete. In March of 2021, Microsoft updated documentation to the licensing requirements for Carrier Tenants to require that a specific Teams license remain assigned to the Carrier Tenant. No notice or pushed communication on the documentation update was provided to CallTower.

CallTower is working with our Microsoft Account Team to identify why no notice was provided to CallTower and to ensure CallTower’s Product and Engineering teams are notified of changes to configuration documentation.

Microsoft published a follow-on statement to customers via the O365 portal stating “Our investigation determined that the Microsoft Teams license had expired with the third-party partner that your organization utilizes for call routing, resulting in the dependent Session Border Controllers (SBCs) to stop routing PSTN calls as expected. We’ve worked with the third-party organization to renew the licenses.” CallTower acknowledges Microsoft’s statement regarding the root cause of the issue. The issue was not caused by expired licenses, but by a new requirement that a license continue to be assigned.

Microsoft Premier Support experienced significant internal delays in urgently working CallTower’s Severity A case due to misrouting and handling errors within Microsoft Support. CallTower’s Engineering and Executive Staff worked with all available channels to escalate and get the appropriate resources assigned to our case. Microsoft has acknowledged the errors and delay in the internal handling of this issue and is working with CallTower to improve the support response and resolution timing as well as appropriate case routing for Severity A issues.

CallTower provides a reliable, industry-leading voice network as one of the largest Microsoft Teams Direct Routing providers. Teams Direct Routing customers did not experience the reliability they have come to expect on August 17, 2021. The extended period of service interruption to CallTower’s customers is deeply concerning.  CallTower and Microsoft worked together to correct this issue and have engaged in further discussions on improving the change management process going forward. This event has both CallTower and Microsoft committed to strengthening our relationship and our ability to deliver a premium voice service for our Teams customers.

Please contact your Customer Success Manager with any questions at accountmanagement@calltower.comcreate new email.

August 9, 2021

Stir/Shaken – Update

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has taken action to limit the ability of robocalls to scam consumers and businesses through rules to address caller ID spoofing.  The FCC is regulating this process using STIR/SHAKEN.

What is STIR/SHAKEN?

STIR/SHAKEN uses digital certificates, based on common public-key cryptography techniques, to ensure the calling number of a telephone call is secure. In simple terms, each telephone service provider obtains their digital certificate from a certificate authority that is trusted by other telephone service providers. The certificate technology enables the called party to verify that the calling number is accurate and has not been spoofed.  The process is similar to the security process for HTTPS secured websites.  The originating telephone service provider attests to the level of validation that can be guaranteed on each call.

There are 3 levels of attestation that can be applied to a call:

  • Full or “A” Attestation:  The service provider knows the customer and their right to use the phone number.
  • Partial or “B” Attestation:  The service provider knows the customer but not the source of the phone number.
  • Gateway or “C” Attestation:  The service provider has originated the call onto the network but can’t authenticate the call source e.g., international gateway.

The new TRACED Law (STIR/SHAKEN technology implementation) took effect on June 30, 2021. There will be no immediate change in how calls will be processed, as there continue to be extended implementations industry-wide.  Changes to handling calls based on STIR/SHAKEN attestation information will be phased in over different timeframes for each US telecommunications provider.   

Please note:

  • CallTower is currently signing and providing attestation on outbound calls
  • Over the next two maintenance windows (August and September 21), CallTower will be configuring our network to provide Full, or A-level Attestation on outbound calls utilizing CallTower provided numbers.
  • Outbound customer calls using non-CallTower provided numbers will be signed with Partial, or B level Attestation.
  • CallTower will communicate any changes to how we handle inbound calls based on attestation level before they take effect.

What does this mean for my business right now?

Your CallTower services will not change at all.  There are no feature changes and no action on your side is needed.

Please contact your Customer Success Manager with any questions at accountmanagement@calltower.comcreate new email.

March 8, 2021

Poly Trio 8500/8800: Microsoft Teams – End of Support

We are ending support for Microsoft Teams on the Poly Trio 8500/8800. Refer to the timing outlined below to understand the timing and impact for your organization.

  • June 30, 2021: Poly Trio 8500/8800 Teams Certification will expire, with Microsoft providing certification level support* until this date.  
  • June thru August 2021: Microsoft will provide critical bug support* only, provided the solution can be implemented by August 31, 2021.
  • August 31, 2021: 
    • Microsoft will no longer provide support for Trio 8500/8800 running Microsoft Teams.
    • All customer inquiries shall be directed to Poly Customer Support.
    • Devices will be removed from MarketPlace and Teams certified devices list on docs.microsoft.com.

Definitions

  • Certification level support: Full product and customer support through escalation process as defined by Skype for Business Certification Agreement. From a product perspective, within the 2 years of certification validity, product is part of the joint development efforts of new features and receives all new features and bug fixes part of the product release cycle.
  • Critical bug level support: Product and customer support is limited to addressing critical bugs. No new features will be developed for or made available as part of the Microsoft product release cycle.
  • Critical bug: Impacting multiple customers, complete loss of service or a significant feature that is completely unavailable, and no workarounds exist.

How this will affect your organization:

You are receiving this message because our reporting indicates one or more users in your organization are using the Poly Trio 8800/8500.

What you need to do to prepare:

Instead of using Poly Trio 8800/8500 for your conference needs, we recommend the Poly Trio C60. Go to Microsoft Teams enabled devices to see the complete list of our Teams certified devices.

January 16, 2021

GlobalMeet Webcast Software Update 

In the early morning hours of Saturday, January 16th, 2021 (ET), we will release software updates to the GlobalMeet Webcast platform. While GlobalMeet works on the system, including the administrative tool and events, may be inaccessible for a few hours. This regularly scheduled release is being done to provide improved functionality and to ensure that we continue to provide you with the best service possible.

Highlights of this scheduled update

  • HD Video by Default: Leverage HD video for your events with a system default of 480p for all newly created templates
  • Trade Show Lite: Increase audience interaction by adding a conference level chat, Q&A and tabs for downloads and additional custom content to your portal agenda page
  • Flexible Broadcast Times: Schedule events in 5 minute increments, (e.g 1:00, 1:05, 1:10, 1:15) for added flexibility, particularly for conferences with back-to-back event schedules
  • Audio and Video Recordings: Download MP3 recordings of audio events or generate MP4 video recordings that include all player layout changes used during your event
  • FINRA Compliance: Keep a local copy of all audience emails sent, as required by FINRA regulations.

Important Notes Regarding Browser Support:
As of Dec. 31st. 2020, GlobalMeet will no longer support Windows7 users on Internet Explorer (IE) 11: IE11 on Windows7 does not support the Media Source Extensions necessary for modern HTML5 (HLS) streaming delivery. With the end of Adobe Flash Player support on Dec. 31st. 2020, GlobalMeet can no longer support a work around using Flash player. More info can be found here: https://www.adobe.com/products/flashplayer/end-of-life.html 

Please note, Internet Explorer 11 on Windows 10 systems will continue to be supported for viewers until August 17, 2021. “Legacy” Microsoft Edge support will end on March 9, 2021. “New” Chromium based Microsoft Edge will continue to be supported. These dates are in line with Microsoft’s end of life support for those browsers, which can be found here: https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/microsoft-365-blog/microsoft-365-apps-say-farewell-to-internet-explorer-11-and/ba-p/1591666 

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