I’ve spent the last 13 years of my life dedicated to mobile security. Whether it was helping to create the secure smartphone industry at BlackBerry, developing an integrity platform for mobility at Fixmo, or guiding a Continuous Mobile Monitoring solution at Good Technology, I’ve been a proponent of having a holistic mobile security strategy. One that aims to infuse security at it’s core, and connect all the disparate information feeds into a single picture of risk for mobility, providing both real-time situational awareness as well as autonomous response to threats and zero-day attacks.
Thus far the market hasn't been ready, because the focus has been on lighting up new flavors of mobile devices and enabling line of business applications to extend mobile reach. I can’t blame them. Organizations have been focusing on return-on-invest, increasing revenues, and customer stickiness, and there have been no viable solutions that address the full spectrum of mobile security issues.
But how many more articles like this will it take for organizations to wake up to the fact they need better mobile security than what the market is offering?
Introducing the Blockchain for Mobility
The mobile security industry needs a reboot, and that reboot starts with the introduction of blockchain technology. Yes, that technology made famous by Bitcoin, and traditionally focused on de-centralized financial transactions. The thing is, blockchains have far reaching impacts on security and technology for our future.
What if we could apply blockchain technology to mobile security? What if every mobile device, email, file transfer or firmware update is entered into the blockchain and can be independently and mathematically verified? All of a sudden their usefulness does not end as a distributed cash system, but rather emerges as a new way for the industry to prove the integrity of their data, the integrity of their transactions, and add a level of transparency to security that has been wildly lacking in our era of “trust-us” solution providers.
This is why I joined Guardtime. The missing piece to the mobile security puzzle I was struggling with was the ability to provide true integrity to mobile security, from the ground up. The ability to not say “Trust me”, but actually allow third-party independent verification of the security system and every transaction that has occurred.
Think about what it could mean if mobile vendors embraced blockchain technology. It could mean a new level of integrity that we have never seen. It could usher in a new era of data privacy and governance, and ultimately put control back in the hands of businesses and governments.
BlackBerry for the Win
Truth be told, and I may be biased, but I believe BlackBerry is in one of the best positions to bring this new security reality to life. BlackBerry intrinsically understands security, and has been eating, sleeping and breathing it for the last 15 years. In a recent open letter, CEO John Chen said “…if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”, which speaks to BlackBerry returning to their roots as a secure mobility provider for business and government.
There’s a growing sense of urgency in the marketplace as Apple and Android solutions continue to run into security issues, and it’s creating a gap for BlackBerry to re-emerge as an innovative leader in secure mobility.
Imagine taking the strong established security base of BlackBerry, and integrating mobile blockchain technology to enable real-time and trust-free validation of devices, data, and transactions and providing an independent audit trail for everything that happens in our mobile society. Now that’s an interesting thought, and one that could enable true situational awareness and autonomous response to the unending threats raining down on mobility.
BlackBerry is, and always has been, the most secure mobile offering within the marketplace. And they might just be the only company that understands where the security puck is going, and can skate there before the rest of the market.