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Published: May 13, 2013
USA: Arlington, Virgina – The US Department of Defense (DOD) has given the nod for the use of BlackBerry devices on the DOD network.
The Department of Defense is made up The Navy, Amy, Marine Corps and the Air Force. Some of the other agencies under the DOD are: Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), National Security Agency (NSA), Central Security Service (CSS) and National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA). The permitted smart-phones will be the ones running on BlackBerry 10 as well as Playbook Tablets running Enterprise Service 10 system.
BlackBerry is “the gold standard for secure end-to-end” mobility and security. The BlackBerry Playbook is also used by British Police as an aid to secure crime-fighting.
According to BlackBerry their devices “Satisfy the full range of security needs; from a basic level up to very high levels of security and control”. They have “Protection against data leakage and unauthorized devices accessing corporate assets.” Blackberry phones offer secure corporate data and applications on BYOD (bring your own devices) personal devices and assures end-users of their privacy and freedom through BlackBerry® Balance™.
The Advanced Enterprise Mobility Management controls and settings option enables full compliance for government and regulated environments on the Blackberry devices. These security features keeps Blackberry light years ahead of its competition.
At present Apple devices do not currently have DOD approval although the Pentagon is testing Apple devices which may yet get clearance in the near future.
Also on the list of approved devices is Samsung’s Android Knox.
Lt Col Damien Pickart, a Pentagon Spokesperson, said in a statement “this is a significant step towards establishing a multi-vendor environment that supports a variety of state-of-the-art devices and operating systems.”Lt Col Damien Pickart however explained that this move by the Pentagon does not mean that orders will be placed with BlackBerry or Samsung but it means user groups within the Pentagon can choose to have those devices.
Tech Crunch reports that in February, the Pentagon initiated an effort to broaden its list of approved mobile devices so that the military could access the latest communications technology and is not dependent on just one equipment vendor.
The Pentagon’s drive to broaden its register of electronics led to a report that it was in process of phasing out almost all of the BlackBerrys used by its employees but this was swiftly rubbished by the Pentagon.
The DOD has an estimated 600,000 mobile phone users. Of these 470,000 are BlackBerry users. Currently 41,000 Apple users and only 8,700 Android users are taking part in the pilot test programs.