Samsung Knox service cleared for use by UK government

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Samsung devices can be used by public sector workers if the firm’s Knox 1.0 software is installed after the service was approved for use by the government.

The Communications and Electronics Security Group (CESG), part of GCHQ, issued new End User Device (EUD) guidance for Knox on Wednesday. It gave its approvals after testing the Knox 1.0 software on a Galaxy S4 device running Android 4.3.

Samsung said the approval now allows a raft of top-end Samsung devices, including the Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy S3, Galaxy S4 and the flagship Galaxy S5, to be used in the public sector.

Samsung confirmed to V3 that the CESG approvals also covered future Android versions, meaning 4.4 KitKat that comes on Galaxy S5 devices is approved too.

V3 contacted Samsung for comment on this but had received no reply at the time of publication.

The government bulletin also contains several areas that it says departments must consider when using Knox, covering data-in-transit and data-at-rest protection and user authentication requirements.

CESG recommended using additional measures to addresses these points, such as ensuring users having passwords for their Knox login and using virtual private network tools compatible with Knox to protect data.

The CESG also noted that an enterprise application catalogue for vetted applications or a whitelist of available apps should be used to stop malicious apps being installed.

Injong Rhee, senior vice president of Samsung’s Knox Business, was understandably upbeat on the approval.

“With this significant recognition, government agencies across the UK will be able to adopt Samsung Knox-enabled Galaxy smartphones and tablets setting the scene for other governments to follow.

“CESG’s acknowledgment of Samsung Knox is testament to the high standard of security offered by the platform and a further milestone as we work to grow our relationships with government organisations and large corporate enterprises worldwide.”

The guidance does not cover Samsung’s newer Knox 2.0 security suite of tools, and this accreditation is being worked on. Samsung said it hoped to achieve this before the end of the year.

14 May 2014 | 2:32 pm – Source: v3.co.uk
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