BlackBerry continues emphasis on mobile security with AtHoc

BlackBerry continues emphasis on mobile security with AtHoc

​Canadian smartphone manufacturer BlackBerry is to continue its focus on the mobile security market, chief executive officer John Chen has revealed.

Speaking at the company's Security Summit in New York on Thursday (August 6th), Mr Chen said that while hardware was still a part of the company's operations, it was to place a greater emphasis on the area of mobile security.

He said:  "All of our investments and acquisitions go to one thing, to make the most secure mobile platform that the industry has to offer."

One such investment has been for AtHoc, which supplies software platforms for sending out alert messages to smartphones and other digital devices.

Details of the deal have not yet been disclosed, but the purchase is nevertheless one of a number made over the course of the last 12 months to its growing portfolio of security-related software and services, including SecuSmart and WatchDox.

In the case of AtHoc, which BlackBerry hopes to roll out to its messaging service, the company uses technology to send out alerts about potentially disruptive events, such as extreme weather conditions, along with other pieces of vital information.

So far, it has been used by the US Transportation Security Agency in airports for notifying TSA officers whenever they spot any suspicious activity.  

While losing ground in the hardware market is one of the main drivers behind BlackBerry's decision to move into mobile security, it claims the rise of trends such as the internet of things (IoT) has created an increased demand for appropriate software solutions.

Marty Beard, BlackBerry chief operating officer told IDG News Service: "As connectivity increases, the needs for security and privacy exponentially increase.

"As we get into the Internet of things, the real value will come from the data connectivity and the application connectivity."