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Device Lockdown

Network Chemistry Inc. has extended its security system so that administrators can now protect Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT)- and Symbian Ltd. -based smartphones against data loss and network infections.

According to Brian De Haaff, vice president of product management and marketing at Network Chemistry, adding Symbian and Microsoft support to its endpoint security software will enable organizations to set up a single policy framework on laptops and smartphones for cellular, wired, and wireless LAN connections.

De Haaff notes that smartphones are being "more and more widely used" in the enterprise. The firm cites a study from Gartner Inc. saying that 22 percent of the enterprise workforce already uses mobile applications and that smartphone shipments alone will increase by 66 percent to reach 81 million units by the end of 2006.

There are only a few other security software packages of this type currently on the market. Firms such as Trust Digital offer dedicated security software for PDAs and smartphones. The WiFi market has not yet grappled with this level of device security. The rise of converged cellular and WiFi handsets, however, is likely to change that picture.

Leading smartphone vendors, such as Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK), Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT), and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (Korea: SEC), have or will soon release such products. These FMC phones increase the connectivity options for users but could also potentially open up more avenues of attack for hackers.

Phones based on the Symbian operating system, the world's most popular, have been subject to some security scares of late. (See The Blue Flu?.)

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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