17 December 2002 Systems giant IBM is to sell mobile equipment maker Nokia’s security software to enterprises that use mobile devices running the Symbian operating system.
The companies said that IBM Global Services, the world’s largest IT services organisation, will implement Nokia’s Mobile Virtual Private Network (VPN) security software.
Nokia’s Mobile VPN software consists of its Security Service Manager server software and Nokia Mobile VPN Client software, which enables organisations to provision user devices and third-party applications with VPN capabilities “over-the-air”, said John Kirby, IBM’s vice president of global wireless e-business services.
The deal will boost Nokia’s ambition to gain a stronger presence in the enterprise market for wireless software. It is also further good news for Symbian, the London-based consortium of manufacturers including Nokia, Ericsson, Motorola and Psion – and another blow to Symbian rival Microsoft’s bid to dominate the burgeoning wireless data security market.
Organisations cite security as one of the biggest obstacles to the adoption of mobile technologies. A virtual private network (VPN) is a corporate network that uses a public communications infrastructure to carry its traffic. The data is encrypted from point-to-point for privacy.
“IBM’s customers tell us that security is of crucial importance as they mobilize their workforces to increase productivity and drive competitive advantage,” said Kirby.
He added that the deal with Nokia would help IBM to offer customers “end-to-end” secure wireless implementations, including wireless local-area networks and smart cards, as well as sales force and workforce management applications.