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Blackberry Businesses Government

Pentagon Readies Contingency Plans Due To BlackBerry's Uncertain Future 44

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the sound-of-nails-being-hammered dept.
cold fjord writes "Nextgov reports, 'The Defense Department, owner of 470,000 BlackBerrys, is distancing itself from the struggling vendor while moving ahead with construction of a department wide app store and a system for securing all mobile devices, including the latest iPhones, iPads, and Samsung smartphones and tablets. Just two months ago, when BlackBerry announced the company would radically curtail commercial sales, Pentagon officials said their business partnership remained unaffected. ... A 2012 strategy to transition personnel from PCs to smartphones and tablets did not favor any one device maker ... "This multi-vendor, device-agnostic approach minimizes the impact of [a] single vendor to our current operations," Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Damien Pickart said. Implementation of the strategy centers on a "mobile device management" system to track handhelds that touch military networks so that they do not compromise military information or corrupt Defense systems.'"
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Pentagon Readies Contingency Plans Due To BlackBerry's Uncertain Future

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  • Government (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Phoenix666 (184391) on Wednesday November 13, 2013 @09:40AM (#45412301)

    My favorite part of Blackberry's troubles is that it will cripple the federal government. All the politicians and their lackies run around with Blackberrys sutured to their hands, texting each other in meetings and rudely breaking off in mid-conversation to answer texts because they're incredibly important people and you're not. It's not intentional of course, but Blackberry's failure will do more for productivity in Washington DC and to bring the people living in the Beltway bubble back down to earth than all the NGOs, PACs, and citizen action groups combined.

    With the NSA revelations, government shutdown, plummeting approval ratings, and now Blackberry's shutdown, DC is teetering on the edge of collapse (thank god). I'm wondering what will be the straw that breaks the camel's back. Student loan bubble bursting?

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by cosmin_c (3381765)
      Obviously it'd be better to give them iPhones and Android phones so they can play Angry Birds. That will definitely increase productivity.
    • by oodaloop (1229816)
      Why would productivity decrease with an iPhone or Android phone in your hand vice a Blackberry?
    • by gstoddart (321705)

      All the politicians and their lackies run around with Blackberrys sutured to their hands, texting each other in meetings and rudely breaking off in mid-conversation to answer texts because they're incredibly important people and you're not.

      And nothing different will happen if the manufacturer of the device changes, because this has nothing at all to do with BlackBerry.

      They'll just be self absorbed people with a different kind of phone.

    • by zeroduck (691015)

      It's not intentional of course, but Blackberry's failure will do more for productivity in Washington DC and to bring the people living in the Beltway bubble back down to earth than all the NGOs, PACs, and citizen action groups combined.

      I like to dream, too.

  • I would have thought they would have had a plan a long time ago.
  • Now it only take them 2-3 years to get it implemented and approved from the security office.
  • Wait, what? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Dr. Manhattan (29720) <sorceror171@gmai ... om minus painter> on Wednesday November 13, 2013 @10:09AM (#45412629) Homepage

    Implementation of the strategy centers on a "mobile device management" system to track handhelds that touch military networks so that they do not compromise military information or corrupt Defense systems.'"

    Why would you even allow handhelds to "touch military networks", unless they were military-supplied handhelds?

    • by oodaloop (1229816)
      DoD has been talking for a while about a BYOD approach. Not sure if that's what they mean here, but it's possible.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      It's called COTS. And in most such cases, there's going to be an approval process in between. e.g. "this device meets our security requirements".

      Also, any device being talked about here is going to be limited to unclassified data. Type I equipment (such as Sectera Edge) is a whole other ballgame.

    • by tibman (623933)

      It's safe to use authorized civy devices on the http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NIPRNet [wikipedia.org]

  • In my little rear-end of the US Government (agency of less than 1500 employees) we have been on BlackBerry since 2003. Moving to iPhone over the course of this year with the troubled waters of BB. I won't shed a tear. Our IT folks have stuck with BB 7 devices and the attachment handling stinks, web browsing is horrible, and I hate the keypads versus touchscreen keypads.
    • by hawkbat05 (1952326) on Wednesday November 13, 2013 @11:11AM (#45413317)

      There are a lot of people who still prefer real keyboards. I've used several different BlackBerry's (including a new Q10) as well as several Android devices (Xperia X10, Galaxy Nexus, Nexus 4). Even with all the neat third party keyboards available on Android, I haven't yet found one that let's me type as fast as my Q10. This is why the Torch owners seem to like their devices so much.

      • by faedle (114018)

        I've told the IT department where I work they can have my Blackberry Bold when they pry it from my cold dead hands.

  • I was talking with a colleague who works in the defence communications security intelligence field this summer regarding the possible end-game for BlackBerry.

    Currently, for US and Canadian government BlackBerry's, they do a scheduled production run in the US (all chips, semiconductors, etc. are produced in known secured facilities to ensure end-to-end security is maintained).

    They could just do the same with either the iPhone or Android devices. Code review all software, microcode, crypto algorithms, etc. to

  • by Anonymous Coward

    So I've been looking over the snowden leaks( I could of missed them and I'm aware of there BIS arrangement with Saudi Arabia and India and was dissapointed) and didn't see Blackberry on them, you know for all the discussion on /. about this kinda stuff you think this would be a talking point for the security minded folk around here.

  • Uncertain? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by eek_the_kat (249620) on Wednesday November 13, 2013 @03:33PM (#45416445)

    Uncertain future? I think Blackberry's future is anything but uncertain.

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