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9/6/2011
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DOD Gets New Weapon For Securing iPhones

SteelCloud has partnered with Good Technology to offer hardware to efficiently secure smartphones across military networks.

>Slideshow: Next Generation Defense Technologies
Slideshow: Next Generation Defense Technologies
(click for larger image and for full slideshow)
SteelCloud has developed a new mobile appliance to help secure iPhones across the Department of Defense (DOD).

Through a partnership with Good Technology, SteelCloud is now offering Mobileworks DE to help DOD IT staff quickly and efficiently configure military-grade security specifications for Apple iOS infrastructure, according to the company. SteelCloud, based in Ashburn, Va., is a provider of mobility appliances and VMware solutions.

Mobileworks DE is loaded with Good Technology's Good for Government enterprise-class mobile mail and personal information management system, which the company said can be deployed in 60 minutes.

As part of the solution, the company also offers a compliance-support offering for DOD Security Technical Implementation Guides (STIGs) that help keep security systems up to date with the appropriate compliance. This allows for the re-allocation of IT resources to other tasks rather than devoting them to manual system deployment, hardening, and maintenance, the company said.

"The DOD's recent approval to allow the deployment of Apple iOS devices represents a quantum change in how mobility solutions are embraced by our military," SteelCloud CEO and president Brian Hajost said in a statement. "Our timely announcement gives the military a powerful option to quickly embrace Apple mobility on the DOD network."

Various branches of the DOD have approved or are in the process of approving smartphones like iPhones and Android-based devices for use. The Coast Guard became the first military branch to approve the use of these devices earlier this month, and the Department of the Navy followed later with news it will soon approve them for the Navy and the Marine Corps.

The Army also has been experimenting with the use of iPhones and other smartphones through its Connecting Soldiers to Digital Applications program.

As the DOD increasingly uses commercial smartphones in the enterprise, security is an essential concern. As one option, the DOD is considering using the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) as a mobile virtual network operator to secure and manage up to 1 million devices across the agency's network.

In the new, all-digital issue of InformationWeek Government: As federal agencies close data centers, they must drive up utilization of their remaining systems. That requires a well-conceived virtualization strategy. Download the issue now. (Free registration required.)

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