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REST hooks for WebRTC Click to Call. Implementation experience

Flashphoner corporate blogWebsite developmentJavaScriptProgrammingDevelopment of communication systems

The "Click to Call" button on the website is an "innovation" that has been around for about 10 years. The technologies under the hood have changed, but the principle remains the same: someone clicks on the button on the site page, then JavaScript launches and requests access to the microphone and establishes a connection to the server — WebRTC SIP gateway. Further, the first client-server leg is a browser gateway, the second leg can be arbitrarily long and through the SIP proxy chain can eventually connect to a mobile or landline phone. Thus, the browser turns, in a sense, into a softphone and becomes a full participant in VoIP telephony.

A one-click call is very convenient for users who access the site through mobile browsers, and today there're most of them. In addition to the convenience for customers, there's still an opportunity to save money. You can configure it in a way that a call from the "Click to Call" button will be charged as a call inside your PBX, i.e. in most cases it's free of charge. The savings, compared to the connection and monthly maintenance of the toll free number, are quite large.

We have a minimal example of implementing such a button on our site. Everything is fine in the example - the code is simple, just take it, copy and be happy. But there's one BUT! It's unsafe to pass the connection parameters to the SIP server in the JS code, a hacker can easily substitute the number of the caller or use the credentials of your SIP server to call penguins in Antarctica and read them "War and Peace". And then the profit from placing the "Click to Call" button on the site can turn into huge losses.

That's why, for the Production implementation, we recommend storing the connection parameters on the server side and substituting them when initializing the call. To do this, you can use REST Hook scripts.

Hooks? What are the hooks?

REST Hook are simple scripts that work with JSON in the body of an HTTP request and return JSON in the body of HTTP responses. REST Hook scripts replace standard WCS API applications and allow to process data about connections, calls and video streams on the backend server.

REST Hook can be used for the following purposes:

  • Authentication of connections to the server by token or password;

  • Getting information about connections, disconnections, start and end of streams, calls, etc. in real time;

  • Overriding data transferred from the client. For example, you can override and hide the real name of the stream or the direction of the call;

  • Implementation of custom signaling with data transmission via WebSockets; for example, sending a text message in the chat to all connected clients.

In this article, we will look at how you can securely pass the SIP server credentials and callee number for the "Click to Call" button using REST Hook technology.

What does it take to make it work?

  1. Front-end Web server organizes the user interface and displays a web page with a "Click to Call" button.

  2. WCS is an intermediary between the user and the SIP server. It converts WebRTC stream from browser to SIP format.

  3. Backend Server is a Web server that makes the REST Hook work.

  4. SIP server and SIP phone.

Logically, we separate the front-end, back-end and WCS servers, but physically they can be placed on the same machine. In this article, we use three separate virtual machines to simplify the example parsing.

What to do and how to configure?

Let's start with the backend server.

We install and configure Nginx and PHP, for example Nginx on CentOS 7.

After that, in the file /etc/nginx/nginx.conf in the "server" section, add the following lines. This setting will make our REST Hook script available for the "/connect" and "/call" events:

location / {
  try_files $uri $uri/ /index.php?$request_uri;
  }

In the directory for the web server files (we have /var/www ), we create a file "index.php", in which we place the main code of the REST Hook being created. This script will implement a domain access check and transfer the connection parameters to the SIP server and the subscriber's number:

<?php
 
$api_method = array_pop(explode("/", $_SERVER['REQUEST_URI']));
$incoming_data = json_decode(file_get_contents('php://input'), true);
$domain = "yourdomain.com";
 
switch($api_method) {
    case"connect": 
	$origin = $incoming_data['origin'];
     
    //logs
    error_log("sessionId: " . $incoming_data['sessionId']);
    error_log("origin: " . $origin); 
    
    $found = strpos($origin, $domain);
 
    if ($found !== false){
        error_log("User authorized by domain " . $domain);
    }else{
        error_log("User not authorized by domain: " . $domain . " Connection failed with 403 status.");
        ubnormalResponse(403);
    }
	
	$rest_client_config = json_decode(file_get_contents('rest_client_config.json'), true); 
    $incoming_data['restClientConfig'] = $rest_client_config;
  
	$incoming_data['sipLogin'] = "10001";
    $incoming_data['sipAuthenticationName'] = "10001";
    $incoming_data['sipPassword'] = "Password_123";
    $incoming_data['sipDomain'] = "172.16.30.156";
    $incoming_data['sipOutboundProxy'] = "172.16.30.156";
    $incoming_data['sipPort'] = "5060";
    break;
	case "call":
    // Callee Number
    $incoming_data['callee'] = "10002";
    break;
} 
header('Content-Type: application/json');
echo json_encode($incoming_data);

function ubnormalResponse($code) {
    if ($code == 403) {
    header('HTTP/1.1 403 Forbidden', true, $code);
    } else {
    header(':', true, $code);
    }
    die();
}
?>

In the same directory /var/www, we create a file "rest_client_config.json". The source code can be found at the end of this page.

In the file "rest_client_config.json" edit the "call" section. Here we specify the policy of the REST method; overwrite data and the value that will be overwritten using the script:

"call" : {
  "clientExclude" : "",
  "restExclude" : "",
  "restOnError" : "LOG",
  "restPolicy" : "OVERWRITE",
  "restOverwrite" : "callee"
 },

Then we go to the WCS server. We will assume that you already have a WCS installed and configured. If not, install it according to this instruction. WCS can be run as a virtual instance on Amazon, Google Cloud and DigitalOcean, or as a container in Docker.

In the console of your server with WCS, check the availability of the REST Hook script for the /connect and /call events using the "Curl" utility:

curl http://172.16.30.123/connect
curl http://172.16.30.123/call

replace 172.16.30.123 with an IP address or the domain name of your backend web server.

If the output of the Curl utility contains the necessary information, such as the parameters for the SIP connection and the number of the subscriber, then we have configured the REST Hook correctly.

Go to WCS server's CLI :

ssh -p 2001 admin@localhost 

you don't need to change anything in this command, the default password is: admin

and change the default application for handling "/connect" and "/call" events to our new REST Hook script using the command:

update app -l http://172.16.30.123/ defaultApp

replace 172.16.30.123 with the IP address or domain name of your backend web server.

After all these settings, go to the front-end web server.

More code to the code's God!

We create two empty files Click-to-Call-min.html and Click-to-Call-min.js on the frontend. These files will contain the minimal code to implement the "Click to call" button.

HTML code:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html lang="en">
<head>
    <meta charset="utf-8">
    <script type="text/javascript" src="https://flashphoner.com/downloads/builds/flashphoner_client/wcs_api-2.0/current/flashphoner.js"></script>
    <script type="text/javascript" src="Click-to-Call-min.js"></script>
</head>
<body onload="init_page()">
	<input type="button" id="callBtn" type="button" Value="Call"/>
    <div id="remoteAudio"></div>
    <div id="localAudio"></div>
</body>
</html>

We remove the data for connecting to the SIP server and the number of the subscriber from JS minimal example code.

JS code:

var SESSION_STATUS = Flashphoner.constants.SESSION_STATUS; 
var CALL_STATUS = Flashphoner.constants.CALL_STATUS;
var localAudio;
var remoteAudio;


function init_page(){
	Flashphoner.init({});
	localAudio = document.getElementById("localAudio");
    remoteAudio = document.getElementById("remoteAudio");
    connect();
}

function connect() {
	var url = "wss://172.16.30.124:8443"
    var sipOptions = {
        registerRequired: true
    };
    var connectionOptions = {
        urlServer: url,
        sipOptions: sipOptions
    };
    console.log("Create new session with url " + url);
    Flashphoner.createSession(connectionOptions).on(SESSION_STATUS.ESTABLISHED, function (session) {
        console.log(SESSION_STATUS.ESTABLISHED);
    }).on(SESSION_STATUS.REGISTERED, function (session) {
        console.log(SESSION_STATUS.REGISTERED);
    });
	callBtn.onclick = call
} 
	
	
function call(session) {
	var constraints = {
        audio: true,
        video: false
    };
	var session = Flashphoner.getSessions()[0]; 
    var outCall = session.createCall({
        remoteVideoDisplay: remoteAudio,
        localVideoDisplay: localAudio,
        constraints: constraints,
        stripCodecs: "SILK"
	});
    outCall.call();
	callBtn.value = "Hangup";
	callBtn.onclick = function () {
		callBtn.value = "Call";
		outCall.hangup();
		connect();
	}
}

Hello, connect me, please

You will need the following for testing:

  1. The test stand that we made above (frontend, WCS, backend);

  2. SIP server;

  3. Two SIP accounts;

  4. Browser;

  5. A software based SIP phone.

We transfer the data for connecting the SIP account 10001 in the JS code of the page with the "Click to Call" button using the REST Hook. The "Click to Call" button is programmed to make a call to 10002. We will enter the credentials for account 10002 into the soft SIP phone.

Open the HTML page created on the front-end web server and click the "Call" button:

We accept an incoming call on the SIP soft phone and make sure that there is an exchange of audio streams between subscribers:

It took some effort, but the result is worth it. Now the credentials of the SIP server and the number of the subscriber are protected against intruders, and you don't have to worry that someone is using your telephony to their advantage.

Links

Demo

Web-SIP phone in a web browser

Click to Call button

Settings file flashphoner.properties

REST Hooks

Quick deployment and testing of the server

A call to a mobile phone via the SIP server

Web SDK Click to Call

Android Click to Call

iOS Click to Call

Tags:wcswebrtcsip-телефонияphpjavascriptrestsecuritynginxrest apiwebrtc sip
Hubs: Flashphoner corporate blog Website development JavaScript Programming Development of communication systems
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