Telekom launches security initiative for smartphones

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  • Graduated, modular product portfolio with selectable security levels
  • Strengthens informational self-determination for consumers and business customers
  • Further expansion of product portfolio planned

Deutsche Telekom offers a graduated, end-to-end product portfolio for mobile security and privacy solutions. It lets customers decide how their personal and business data is handled and which security level they want to select for specific business applications. The product portfolio ranges from an anti-malware app to the SiMKo 3 high-security mobile phone and is characterized by its ease of use. The individual elements are currently in different stages of development and will be expanded further in future. Different modules are available for consumers and business customers. "Smartphones are phones combined with high-performance computers. But in most cases we are far too lax in their use. With our new offerings for smartphone security, we want to close this very gap and put customers back in charge of their own data and security level," says Dr. Jürgen Kohr, head of the Cyber-Security unit at T-Systems. With its integrated portfolio, Deutsche Telekom is a global pioneer in the sector. Thomas Tschersich, head of IT Security at Deutsche Telekom, adds: "Our portfolio is not complete yet, of course. But we would rather distribute the first solutions quickly, to help sensitize the public, than wait too long with a comprehensive package." All solutions will be presented at this year's CeBIT, from March 10-14 in Hanover.

For further mobile phone security Deutsche Telekom offers its customers a partner app. Smartphones can be protected against malware, phishing, threats to privacy and loss of data in case of theft or loss of the device. The app has been provided pre-installed on numerous Android modes in Germany, Croatia, Hungary and Greece and is free of charge. Mobile responsibility - self-determination for personal data A further stage on offer is a privacy solution that Deutsche Telekom has developed for Firefox smartphones in cooperation with the Mozilla Foundation: with "Future of Mobile Privacy", users will be empowered to define the feature settings of their own smartphones and configure the desired privacy level. Users will be able to choose, for example, how much detail app vendors receive in location data. Weather services require less precise location data than navigation services, for instance. Certain functions of the "Future of Mobile Privacy" prototype will be embedded in the operating system and can be started step by step in upcoming Firefox OS versions. "With our solution, we want to show that privacy functions can be embedded as standard smartphone features. For us, privacy is a topic that has to be considered in product design from the very start," says Dr. Claus Ulmer, data privacy officer at Deutsche Telekom. Personal and business on a single smartphone - but separated An open, personal area, combined with a closed area - for business use, for example: Telekom will demonstrate this concept at CeBIT with a "hardened" smartphone developed on the basis of a Samsung model. The two areas are securely isolated from one another within the same operating system. In this approach, a dual-persona concept, applications from the "open", personal area do not have any access to data in the closed-off business area. Sensitive data, such as confidential business e-mail, is protected. Security during transmission In addition to the various protective mechanisms on the user device, the mobile transmission of voice and data is a potential vulnerability for phone tapping. In this area, Deutsche Telekom will present a cloud-based encryption app at CeBIT that ensures encryption along the entire transmission path for voice and text messages. Two devices that use the app exchange temporary encryption codes. This ensures that the data packages cannot be read in transit in the wireless and IT networks. The app can be installed on any Android smartphone - a version for iOS smartphones is planned. The service is run by T-Systems in cooperation with German company GSMK and targets the business market at first. SiMKo 3 - Smartphone, tablet PC and laptop for maximum security demands The SiMKo 3 smartphone has been certified for security level VS-NfD (classified information - for business use only) by the Federal Office for Information Security. It encrypts e-mails, contacts, appointments, short texts, photos, audio recordings and telephone conversations so that the information does not leave the infrastructure of a company or agency. SiMKo 3 can also be used as a tap-proof crypto phone, offering encrypted calls based on voice-over-IP. With its ultrasecure encryption procedures, SiMKo 3 unifies secure and open devices in a single shell. With a swipe of the screen, the user can switch between secure and open operating modes - e.g. when switching from reading a confidential message to viewing train or flight information. In addition to the standard dual-persona concept, separation is embedded deeply in the operating system, by giving the device a microkernel and cryptography chip in SD card format to strictly isolate the business and personal domains from one another. In addition, companies can install the back-end systems in their own data centers, further increasing the ring-fencing. The SiMKo 3 family will soon grow with new devices. A SiMKo 3 tablet PS is already undergoing certification at the German Federal Office for Information Security. A laptop with SiMKo technology is also planned.

About Deutsche Telekom Deutsche Telekom is one of the world’s leading integrated telecommunications companies with 140 million mobile customers, more than 31 million fixed-network lines and over 17 million broadband lines (as of September 30, 2013). The Group provides fixed-network, mobile communications, Internet and IPTV products and services for consumers, and ICT solutions for business and corporate customers. Deutsche Telekom is present in some 50 countries and has 230,000 employees worldwide. The Group generated revenue of € 58.2 billion in the 2012 financial year - over half of it outside Germany (as of December 31, 2012).