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How to Protect Your Critical Mobile Communication in an Era of Interception

From Ukrainian and Russian forces intercepting each other’s phone calls to gain an upper hand in the conflict; to recent headlines regarding state-sponsored, high-altitude monitoring platforms; there are frequent reminders all around us that our adversaries can and will intercept mobile communications.

This includes phone calls, messages, even file sharing. Those intercepting these communications methods place business and national security-driven missions at extreme risk. But the situation is far from hopeless.

Look for the NIAP Certification

One of the things I’ve long suggested to those looking to secure their critical mobile communications is to consider adopting a technology platform that is certified by the National Information Assurance Partnership (NAIP). NIAP works in conjunction with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and others, to manage a U.S. based program for developing protection profiles, evaluation methodologies, and policies that will ensure achievable, repeatable, and testable requirements.

One of the reasons I wanted to write this blog is that I’m proud to announce a renewed NIAP certification for BlackBerry® SecuSUITE®, which guards against adversarial surveillance efforts from both traditional “bugs” and brazen spy balloons. The updated NIAP certifications for SecuSUITE include being listed as a Commercial Solution for Classified (CSfC) compliant product.

This means we can help private businesses and government entities protect their staff’s mobile calling and messaging from interception, spoofing, metadata mining, and yes, even spy balloons. SecuSUITE can also ensure that calls from foreign networks to any home country phone number are protected.

Mobile Communications Security Must Become a Priority

Cyber adversaries go where the data is. And increasingly, today’s government and business-critical data travels via mobile communications devices and channels.

I believe now is the time for organizations to shift their mindset regarding mobile security, as well. I like the way Jack Gold, president of J. Gold Associates, LLC., explains this necessary pivot. “Most enterprises spend a great deal of effort securing their data, but very few businesses and governments expend any significant effort to protect their staff’s everyday mobile calling and messaging from interception, spoofing and metadata mining,” Gold says.

“This is a major failing, as protecting communications is a critical part of an organization’s overall cybersecurity readiness posture. Solutions like BlackBerry SecuSUITE that provide a proven way to do so for both the public and private sector should be an organizational imperative, to guard against things like IP theft or blackmail that are quite often the goal of financially or geo-politically motivated eavesdropping efforts.”

SecuSUITE Overview

If you’re wondering what SecuSUITE does, here is a high-level overview.

Accredited by NATO Communications and Information Agency (NCI Agency) for global use in official NATO secure communications, SecuSUITE allows personnel to exchange fully secure voice and data communications between off-the-shelf iOS® and Android™ devices. It also supports fully encrypted voice calls out of any foreign network back to the caller’s home network, allowing personnel to make secure ‘breakout’ calls to landlines.

More information on BlackBerry SecuSUITE is available here.

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Christoph Erdmann

About Christoph Erdmann

Christoph Erdmann is the Senior Vice President for Secusmart, a subsidiary of BlackBerry.