Lacking firewalls and antivirus software that computers often defend themselves with, the average smartphone presents a relatively easy target for hackers seeking to steal confidential information..
So it’s up to manufacturers, cellphone service providers and app writers to help customers remain secure. One way to do this is through preemptive operating system and software updates. The company dozens of major service providers and manufacturers turn to for that service is an Israeli one called Red Bend.
Established in 1999, Red Bend has become the go to provider of FOTA (Firmware Over the Air) updates for phones and devices made by manufacturers like Kyocera, LG Electronics, Motorola, Sharp, Sony Ericsson and ZTE. Currently, Red Bend’s technology is used by more than 80 mobile device manufacturers, mobile operators and semiconductor vendors, and is present on more than 1.75 billion devices.
Using Red Bend’s technology, said company product marketing director Roger Ordman, service providers and manufacturers can keep their customers’ devices up to date with the latest firmware. “As devices have become more sophisticated we have expanded our offerings,” he told The Times of Israel in a recent interview. “Now we also do application management, and mobile virtualization. It’s more than just configuring software — it’s managing the operating system on a device.”
That has become much more important in the era of BYOD — Bring Your Own Device — in which employees use their own devices to check company email and access documents on company servers. This mixing of personal and business use on the same device could lead to compromised security, said Ordman. “Devices are integrated in the lives of people, both for work and personal use. People use the same device for work, and to access Twitter and Facebook. People want to be online anytime and anywhere.
“The problem arises when they use insecure networks to access services,” Ordman said. “Hackers could use those connections to get valuable information off the device, including corporate data. It’s a big concern for corporations, and our BYOD protection technology is able to solve this.”
Called TRUE Solution for BYOD (for TRUsted Solution), the system allows the service provider or company to virtually install a dual operating system environment, with a solid “wall” between the corporate and personal sides of the device. “You can access the same memory, CPU, and features of the device,” said Ordman. “The applications and data are completely separate, with one of the operating systems dedicated to enterprise.” On that “side” of the device, companies can install firewalls, security systems, and any other protective procedure they want, to ensure maximum security.
Red Bend has won first place in the eighth annual Emerging Technology (E-Tech) Awards competition in the Enterprise Solution for Security, Fraud & Privacy category, awarded by the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association, the largest and most important cellular industry trade association in the US. Red Bend’s TRUE beat out nearly 300 other entries.
CEO Yoram Salinger said, “Employees get a great user experience for their personal and professional lives, while CIOs get a secure solution that integrates with corporate applications and preserves employee privacy,” Salinger said. “Leveraging our experience in managing billions of mobile devices, Red Bend took a totally different approach with TRUE, building a BYOD solution that delivers an excellent dual-persona user experience and meets the requirements for both enterprise security and employee privacy.”