Security

Blackberry gets good news from an unlikely ally, the U.S. defense department

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Las Vegas — Beleagured Blackberry went to Black Hat last week and wanted to talk security.

As in Blackberry security offerings.

The good news? Blackberry announced at the hackfest that its Secure Work Space for iOS and Android, the company’s new security solution, received STIG approval, or Security Technical Implementation Guide approval, by the U.S. Defense Information Agency, which is part of the defense department. To be sure, it’s a small though bright spot against a backdrop of rough news the Canadian firm has endured for the last two years.

Many in Washington DC, and at the Pentagon in particular, still use Blackberry smartphones. The announcement means that defense department employees using Blackberry’s for professional communications can now safely use iOS and Android because they meet stringent safety requirement standards set by the feds.

John Sims, Blackberry’s President of global enterprise, said in a release heralding the DoD approval:

“BlackBerry is the only Enterprise Mobility Management provider that can secure a multi-platform environment based on varying levels of risk and compliance, from meeting the strictest requirements with BlackBerry 10 to providing the most flexibility with support for third-party devices.”

In the short term, this equates to a green light that the DoD trusts Blackberry’s security standards with users sending sensitive data to colleagues from their phones and tablets.

Data transmissions have never been in as much danger of being intercepted than they are today, and with the approval, the feds are sending a crucial message that they trust the Blackberry security offerings for data pushes through channels whose safety cannot be guaranteed.

Ontario-based Blackberry asserts that its smartphones are the preferred platform of choice for G7 government employees. Furthermore, the company has received 50 individual government certifications that Blackberry and its security solutions are up for the challenge of, more or less, sending data over government networks.

In late July, Blackberry also bought Secusmart, a German company whose security offerings protect calls, text and data pushes, for an undisclosed sum. Secusmart recently unveiled a new security solution it promises will help protect phonecalls from eavesdropping.

This upbeat news follows on the heels of a leaked Blackberry memo sent to employees from company brass earlier this month that the period of staff reductions had officially ended.

Good news for President Obama, no doubt, who has been playfully described as addicted to his Blackberry.

 

 

 

 

 

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