United States Air Force BlackBerrys Get New IT Policies

11 Comments

The United States Air Force has over 30,000 BlackBerrys in their inventory, accounting for over 50 percent of the Department of Defense’s total BlackBerry deployment. During the month of March, the Air Force will be implementing security updates to their BlackBerrys in order to better protect the organization from cyber threats.

The following configuration changes will be implemented within the month of March:

  • Users will no longer have the capability to send or receive text messages with attached photos or videos. Text-only messaging will remain enabled.
  • If a device is being synched and its software is out-of-date, a “Force Load” message will appear. The user will only have one opportunity to decline updating the software. Any subsequent syncing attempts will render the device inoperative until the software is updated.
  • Users will not be able to download additional applications to their devices over the Internet.
  • Most Bluetooth functionality will be disabled. The only Bluetooth feature that will continue to function will be linking the device to the smart card reader cradle.
  • Users will no longer be able to connect their smart card reader cradle to their computers.

Could it be that the recent stories of corporate espionage have the DoD spooked on potential cyber threats?

  • Andrew

    I'm sure the real concern is Chinese espionage.

  • http://caspan.com Caspan

    My first mud throwing comment is “Do that with a iPhone or Android!” Man I love my BlackBerry

  • MobileAdmin

    Can you change the headline to Change to BB IT Policy as that is all that is occuring. It reads like they are getting a update to BES which will provide more security.

    Frankly I'm shocked some of these were not already set as I have them enabled.

  • Justin

    I helped release this, and the information is not correct. Please remove this:

    If a device is being synched and its software is out-of-date, a “Force Load” message will appear. The user will only have one opportunity to decline updating the software. Any subsequent syncing attempts will render the device inoperative until the software is updated.

  • kylemcinnes

    Justin – have you read the official press release? It's up on the Air Force's official site. I would go after the source.

    http://www.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123195331

  • kylemcinnes

    How about “United States Air Force BlackBerrys Get New IT Policies”

  • Sith_Apprentice

    Wow, only 2 years after they were ordered to by OSD….. Way to keep up with the times guys. Navy Med has been compliant for some time.

  • Sith_Apprentice

    Here you go…
    http://iase.disa.mil/stigs/stig/wireless-stig-v
    The STIG from 2007 released by DoD. Way to go Air Force. How did you pass any of your audits?

  • http://caspan.com Caspan

    I like the page that has “This page was left intensionally blank!” seriously wow! You know your dealing with DOD documents when they need to write info like that in. It's the pages where all the smiley faces and gold stars go. I hope they didn't download a program to put the smiley faces in the document or emails!

  • http://caspan.com Caspan

    I like the page that has “This page was left intensionally blank!” seriously wow! You know your dealing with DOD documents when they need to write info like that in. It's the pages where all the smiley faces and gold stars go. I hope they didn't download a program to put the smiley faces in the document or emails!

  • http://www.embroiderydigitizing.net/ Embroidery digitizing

    U.S. Air Force’s efforts to make their communications more secure, as part of the security changes, users will no longer have the capability to send or receive text messages with photos or videos; namely, they will only be able to transmit and receive text messages. , the Air Force will be implementing security updates to their BlackBerrys in order to better protect the organization from cyber threats.