G&D supplies Vodafone Germany with SIM card-based system for mobile communication encryption
Vodafone Germany is now offering its corporate and public sector customers SIM card-based end to end encryption for their mobile communication.
Giesecke & Devrient (G&D), global provider of mobile security solutions, developed the product in collaboration with Düsseldorf-based network operator Vodafone.
The product, Secure SIM Data, encrypts and signs emails, documents, data carriers, and VPN connections. Secure SIM Data encrypts emails and documents in such a way that they are unreadable to unauthorised third parties. The customer simply enters a PIN in order to encrypt and add a signature as well as to decrypt their communication.
The solution uses the widespread S/MIME encryption programme for email exchanges, and in the future, encryption via PGP will also be possible. Users also have the option to authenticate emails in order to verify origins and that email content remains unaltered.
Unlike the majority of products that are already available, this solution does not require users to possess separate smartcards or security tokens. The digital private key and corresponding certificates are securely stored on the SIM in the user's notebook or tablet, eliminating the need for additional hardware such as card readers.
This is the second product for securing mobile communication that Vodafone has brought out in collaboration with its security partner G&D. The existing solution has been providing Vodafone customers with secure login access to corporate networks and the data cloud for some time, also in partnership with G&D's latest SIM technology.
'We created Vodafone Secure SIM Data as a simple, cost efficient and above all secure value-added service based on the Vodafone SIM card for the telecommunications group's corporate customers. It regulates access to sensitive data while also protecting mobile data communication effectively against attack,' said Carsten Ahrens, group senior vice president, server software and services (3S) division.
Besides electronic data traffic, the solution can also be used to encrypt storage media such as USB sticks or hard drives. This ensures, for instance, that a sales representative's confidential contract paperwork remains protected against unauthorised access even in the event of theft or loss of the notebook.
Vodafone is presenting the solution for the first time at this year's CeBIT trade show in Hannover, where it will be demonstrated using a Windows 8-based standard Lenovo notebook.