BlackBerry, UK government reject claims of failed BB10 security certification

BlackBerry and the British government deny a British newspaper claim that BlackBerry 10 has failed a major government security certification

Both BlackBerry and the U.K. government have denied reports that the new BB10 software has been rejected for use in sensitive government communications.

Tuesday evening, UK newspaper The Guardian reported that the new BB10 operating system has been rejected by the UK's Communications-Electronics Security Group (CESG) for use in classified government communications. The paper claims the OS failed some security requirements in the Blackberry Balance software, which is intended to separate work and personal accounts and prevent data copying between the two.  

BlackBerry, however, has strongly rejected the report, saying it is "both false and misleading." A company spokesperson told PCWorld: "BlackBerry has a long-established relationship with CESG and we remain the only mobile solution approved for use at 'Restricted' when configured in accordance with CESG guidelines.

"This level of approval only comes following a process which is rigorous and absolutely necessary given the highly confidential nature of the communications being transmitted. The current re-structuring of this approval process, due to the Government Protective Marking Scheme review and the new CESG Commercial Product Assurance scheme has an impact on the timeline for BlackBerry 10 to receive a similar level of approval," the BlackBerry statement continued. "We are continuing to work closely with CESG on the approval of BlackBerry 10 and we're confident that BlackBerry 10 will only strengthen our position as the mobile solution of choice for the U.K. government."

A UK Government Communications Headquarters spokesperson also clarified to PCWorld:

"We are in ongoing discussions with BlackBerry about the use of BlackBerry 10 in government. We have not yet performed a security evaluation of that platform, but we expect to be issuing Platform Guidance in the summer, this will cover a number of platforms including BlackBerry 10 (and using Balance). We have a strong security partnership with BlackBerry and this gives us confidence that BlackBerry 10 is likely to represent a viable solution for UK Government."

As BlackBerry alluded to in its statement, the older BlackBerry 7.1 OS was cleared for UK government use in December 2012 for classifications up to "Restricted"--two levels below "Secret." The BlackBerry Z10 has been on sale in Europe since earlier this year, with good initial sales, but analyst reports suggest the early sales pace has since slowed down.

The BlackBerry Z10 is set to go on sale in U.S. later this week, where BB10 has already received government security clearance in the form of the FIPS 140-2 certification, which allows agencies to deploy devices using the software. The German Procurement Office and Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) has also approved BB10 for official use.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags smartphonesBlackberryconsumer electronicsBusiness mobility

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Daniel Ionescu

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?