The U.S. National Security Agency in Fort Meade Maryland has created an Android phone that some NSA officials believe is capable of handling top-secret conversations. This is great news for Google’s operating system, which some thought was to “open” for enterprise let alone one of the most clandestine government agencies.
The Android phone was developed to handle the most stringent of NSA protocols, using only commercial components. Margaret Salter, a spokeswoman for the agency, told Secure Business Intelligence, that:
“The plan was to buy commercial components, layer them together and get a secure solution… It uses solely commercial infrastructure to protect classified data.”
More after the break
There are about 100 of these Android handsets in existence. They allow agents with NSA to communicate without having to “speak in code” . The handsets employ NSA’s own security protocols IPSEC and SRPT. There is even an app NSA can use to monitor calls on these phones.
These Android handsets came from an NSA project called Project Fishbowl. The project was part of NSA’s mobility program.
NSA had invited manufacturers to design phones to these specs as part of Project Fishbowl. Project Fishbowl even has it’s own government approved app store which is managed by the U.S. Defense Information Systems Agency.