BlackBerry Explains How It Secured Android

BlackBerryjieyirain / Pixabay

BlackBerry, we all know, is releasing an Android-based handset, and the Canadian firm has assured users of its security. Now the company has released details on the steps it took to make the Priv secure, even while running on Android.

How BlackBerry secured the Android platform

BlackBerry’s OS has been built around security, but when it announced plans to release an Android handset, many were concerned about how the Canadian firm will stay committed to its roots of making the smartphone secure. To assuage such concerns, BlackBerry has explained the steps it took to apply its “world-renowned security model to Android.”

In a blog post, the Canadian firm said it has applied “BlackBerry’s Hardware Root of Trust, a unique manufacturing process that injects cryptographic keys into the device hardware, providing a secure foundation for the entire platform.” The Canadian firm has also applied its Verified Boot and Secure Bootchain, which makes use of embedded keys to ensure each layer of the handset (from hardware to OS to apps) have not been tinkered with.

BlackBerry has also used a “hardened Linux kernel with numerous patches and configuration changes” to boost the handset’s security. The company says that “FIPS 140-2 compliant full disk encryption” has been set as the default to enhance privacy.

The Priv also makes use of BlackBerry’s infrastructure, which is known as “secure distributed global network that transmits petabytes of encrypted data to and from the world’s most powerful leaders and professionals.” The Canadian firm has also applied BES12, which is a leading EMM tool used and trusted by many “powerful governments and corporations.”

Other tools to boost security

Apart from these, the Canadian firm says the handset comes with Android for Work, which will help in separating personal data, work and apps. Users can make use of the built-in BlackBerry DTEK application to protect their privacy. The app allows users to keep an eye on the apps accessing their personal info. It also tells how secure the app is based on the encryption settings, password strength and more.

BlackBerry has slowly and gradually opened its platform to the Android OS. With BB10, the Canadian firm offered Android apps, initially with its secure Android Player and then with direct APK downloads. Then with BB10.3, it allowed users to access the Android apps from the Amazon App Store itself. And now with Priv, it has integrated its secure mobile platform with the most flexible application ecosystem.

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About the Author

Aman Jain
Aman is MBA (Finance) with an experience on both Marketing and Finance side. He has worked as a Risk Analyst for AIR Worldwide, and is currently leading VeRa FinServ, a Financial Research firm. Favorite pastimes include watching science fiction movies, reviewing tech gadgets, playing PC games and cricket. - Email him at amanjain@valuewalk.com

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