Tag: NSA

Barack Obama to get NSA top secret secure BlackBerry 8830

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obama blackberry

Barack Obama is getting a “souped-up, high security BlackBerry for use in and around the White House and during presidential travel.” The device is a BlackBerry 8830 World Edition, with some incredible security tweaks to make sure Kim Jong Il isn’t listening in on his conversations.

Washington-based Genesis Key developed the special security software for Obama’s new 8830, called SecureVoice, which will presumably run alongside the traditional BlackBerry OS. Officials from the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA), the White House Communications Agency (part of the Pentagon’s Defense Information Systems Agency), Research In Motion (RIM) and Genesis Key all collaborated on Barack Obama’s presidential BlackBerry.

The security software was designed to provide access to NSA top secret information. In order for the BlackBerry to access this information, which is the highest grade of security classification, the software was required to be incredibly robust. The software not only works on Obama’s BlackBerry, but is compatible with any 8830 or BlackBerry Curve 83xx. This does not mean it will be available to consumers, but rather it’s needed to be able to communicate with other SecureVoice enabled devices.

Don’t expect any leaked screenshots!

[Al Sacco Via]

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NSA develops military-grade smartphone

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If you were ever wondering why the BlackBerry wasn’t secure enough for France, you might want to take a look at the Sectéra Edge, the smartphone that’s being developed for the NSA and soldiers in the field. Some of the security features include:

* Secure wireless access to the SIPRNET and NIPRNET
* DoD PKI enabled Common Access Card (CAC) support
* Supports DoD 8100.2 requirements
* Type 1 encrypted storage of classified data
* Can be used inside closed areas with “SCIF-Friendly” mode

On top of that, this thing was built extra-rugged for combat conditions, as seen in their demo video. The Edge works on CDMA, GSM and Wi-Fi, and also plays nice with S/MIME BlackBerry users. Apparently the NSA has ordered up $300-million-worth of these things over the next five years, so if you’re in the U.S. Army, keep your eyes peeled.

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