One of our biggest surprises back at MWC 2014, was the Blackphone. It’s not until you see a booth packed with people willing to learn more about this product that you get to understand just how important security is to the world today. The Blackphone is already in the market, and after some negative criticism that it received from BlackBerry a couple of days ago, Blackphone’s CEO Toby Weir-Jones decided to fight back with a statement.
In his statement, Weir-Jones discusses how BlackBerry talks about the company’s peer-to-peer encrypted voice calling, and how BlackBerry’s current infrastructure led to some issues with local governments over lawful interception of calls and content, and which resulted in betrayals of customers. Some excerpts from the statement include:
“Unfortunately, the world discovered in 2010 that RIM was willing to compromise its integrity if sufficient pressure was applied by governments intent on spying on the messages sent via the ubiquitous devices. Various statements from the Saudi, UAE, Indian, and other telecom regulatory bodies all confirmed the same thing: RIM made it technically possible for the formerly-secret encrypted messages to be decrypted and viewed. Much speculation surrounds exactly what was done, and whether it remains in place today, but if anything there was more than one approach which achieved the same basic goal: a betrayal of the objectives of privacy.”
“In the past five years, the drop is still almost 83%, and that’s including the recent bump following Blackberry’s announcement that, at last, they’re opening up their own Blackberry Enterprise Server to manage the devices people actually buy: namely, iOS and Android.”
“This touches upon a key point: our approach is attractive because the technology and architecture of the Blackphone ecosystem is more flexible, more transparent, and more usable. Closed systems — like BES and Mr. McGarvey’s beloved EMM approach — are not attuned to how most enterprises are deploying mobility solutions today.”
The biggest problem the Blackphone faces now is to prove itself. Surely the company had a right to defend itself against the BlackBerry attack, but it’s hard to call a product that barely reached the market a couple of weeks ago as superior when compared to what governments have been using for almost a decade. We’ll see how secure the Blackphone really is in the next coming weeks.