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Vodafone Plans Major Security Drive With BAE Systems

Tom Brewster is TechWeek Europe's Security Correspondent. He has also been named BT Information Security Journalist of the Year in 2012 and 2013.

Vodafone Mobile Threat Manager the first fruit of five-year deal with BAE Systems

Vodafone has signed off on a five-year partnership with defence contractor BAE Systems, which will see the communications giant offer plenty of security services for government and enterprise.

The pair have promised to deliver “advanced communications security products and services”, the first of which is the Vodafone Mobile Threat Manager.

It’s a cloud service, which scans traffic going to and coming out of company mobile devices, meaning it is going into closer competition with security firms such as Cisco, with its ScanSafe products, and Zscaler, who both do similar cloud-based protection.

Vodafone BAE SystemsVodafone threat management

The Mobile Threat Manager will go live in Spring 2013 and will be initially available to Vodafone’s largest 1,500 global enterprise customers.

“As a new generation of mobile-centric security risks begins to emerge, our customers are looking for our help to protect their businesses,” said Vittorio Colao, CEO of Vodafone Group.

“Our partnership with BAE Systems will strengthen further our commitment to meet our customers’ increasingly complex cyber security needs.”

TechWeekEurope wasn’t able to squeeze much more information out of BAE and Vodafone, following their terse announcement [It might have required inhumane methods – Editor]. Neither were able to say, at the time of publication, what products were coming up outside of the mobile offering, nor could they say what technology lay behind the first product.

It appears they could soon focus on securing “interconnected devices using machine to machine (M2M) technology” – an area mentioned in the joint release today.

The pair were happy to rant about their new contract, however, which will see Vodafone become the preferred partner for mobile communications outside of the US. Vodafone will provide services to BAE Systems’ 35,000 UK employees from July 2013.

They are also discussing a deal to bring unified communications to BAE Systems in the UK.

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