Tilts Visiem (TiVi) says it will be offering an “unbreakable” level of caller authentication and voice and video encryption in its mobile VoIP software client "TiVi Phone" after linking up with Philip R Zimmermann’s Zfone Project.

The newer versions of TiVi Phone have a Phil Zimmermann’s ZRTP software library built in upon a commercial licence agreement between Tilts Visiem and Zfone.

TiVi said this meant users enjoyed better privacy when using the mobile version of the software.

The SIP-based application is downloadable from TiVi.com and usable in a 3-day trial mode, however permanent activation of the encryption feature requires purchasing a software key.

Ivo Kutts, CEO and co-founder of Tilts Visiem, said TiVi Phone bundled with ZRTP was unique for several reasons.

  • it’s inexpensive in comparison to all known alternatives and older technologies
  • it’s easy to install and run by any smartphone owner
  • it’s one of the first encrypting VoIP applications for mobile phones.

Kutts said that, in addition, ZRTP cryptography offered the ultimate protection against eavesdropping and identity spoofing during a VoIP call.

"Zfone is the leading light in today’s secure VoIP communications because its algorithms and source code – developed by Phil Zimmermann and his colleagues – are publicly available and open to peer review,” he said. “This contrasts with the unverifiable security claims by Skype."

Tilts Visiem’s VoIP/messenger products first appeared on the international market in 2003 in the PC version.

In 2006, the company added mobile VoIP clients for Symbian, Windows Mobile and Pocket PC platforms, already including free, IP-based video calling.

The TiVi VoIP solutions, intended for next-generation networks, are sold to integrators and competitive carriers in Europe, Asia and North America.

The ZRTP protocol has some cryptographic features lacking in many other approaches to VoIP encryption.

Although it uses a public key algorithm, it avoids the complexity of a public key infrastructure (PKI).

It uses ephemeral Diffie-Hellman, and allows the detection of man-in-the-middle (MiTM) attacks by displaying a short authentication string for the users to verbally compare over the phone.

The TiVi team had been looking for an industry-leading cryptography solution for several years before it met PGP’s author Zimmermann at San Jose’s VON 2007 event.

Specialists in proprietary and interoperable VoIP billing solutions and end-user software, they said they were particularly aware of the imminent switchover to internet telephony and the proportionally growing demand for secure VoIP communications.

This meant that more and more businesses and individuals realise the need to protect their legitimate interests and privacy, since unencrypted voice or video calls transmitted over the public internet can be intercepted by a variety of third parties.

Phil Zimmerman said that as users transitioned from traditional phones to VoIP, there was a dramatically increased risk of being wiretapped by just about anyone, including criminals who seem to have their way with the rest of the Internet today.

“TiVi Phone can protect individuals, companies, and government officials from eavesdropping by criminals,” he said.

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