Samsung planning Knox 2.0 for smartphones, tablets
Samsung's upcoming Knox 2.0 will have more security features and support more devices.
IDG News Service - After releasing the first version of Knox security software after a long testing period, Samsung is working on version 2.0.
Knox 2.0 will offer more security features and work in more devices, said Jae Shin, vice president of the Knox Business Group in Samsung's mobile communications division. Shin did not provide details of the new features in Knox 2.0, but development of features will depend on user needs.
Knox is built on Android, and taps into the OS and chipset features to secure a device. Samsung has partnered with mobile-device management software companies MobileIron, AirWatch, SAP, Citrix, Centrify and Mocana to take advantage of Knox.
"When we give [Knox] to them, we have a minimum feature guideline," Shin said, adding that the companies adapt the security layer to match their mobile-device management software.
Knox now works with the Qualcomm chipset. Support for more chipsets, including Samsung's, is being built in, Shin said. However, he couldn't say if Knox would come to Windows Phone OS, which is also used by Samsung in some handsets.
The security software is in the Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition tablet, which became available last week in the U.S. The security layer is also being offered with some Galaxy S4 smartphones.
Knox represents a big push by Samsung to make its tablets and smartphones relevant in the bring-your-own-device environment. Enterprises also are looking for easier mobile device management tools.
For example, Knox features allow the creation of secure boot so only authorized applications are on the device. Knox can create isolated environments to run specific applications, which will ensure Android isn't compromised. Knox can also be used to establish secure VPN (virtual private network) connections, or to prevent keylogging or hacking. Samsung takes advantage of the TrustZone hardware-based security layer to store security keys and create isolated environments.
"Knox is an attempt by Samsung to do what Google should've done with Android a year ago, which is secure it," said Jack Gold, principal analyst at J. Gold Associates.
Users also bring non-Samsung personal devices into business environments and the security features need to be on more devices for a more manageable BYOD environment, Gold said.
One of Samsung's challenges with Knox is to deal with a diversity of handsets running different versions of Android with different OS upgrade timelines, Gold said.
Samsung is pushing Knox to wireless carriers, which will offer the security layer to customers. Canadian wireless carrier Bell last week said it will sell Knox-enabled Samsung mobile devices to its customers in vertical markets.
Samsung is also trying to woo developers in an effort to push its Galaxy smartphones and tablets into the enterprise. Samsung has released programming tools for Galaxy devices to members of its Solutions Exchange, a program announced last month to help companies write and deploy mobile applications.
- Strategies for Securing Mobile Certificates Most organizations have no visibility into what users have access to which increases the risk of unauthorized access to critical networks, applications, and...
- Securing BYOD Mobile computing is becoming so ubiquitous that people no longer bat an eye seeing someone working two devices simultaneously. Individuals and organizations are...
- Be the One Who Puts Security on the Agenda eBook You want to maximize the potential offered by new technologies and establish an advantage over your competitors. But you know the latest IT...
- The State of Video Conferencing Security Video conferencing equipment, found in almost every boardroom around the world, may be opening up companies to serious security breaches. This paper explains...
- It's not too late...Get Your Mobile Questions Answered Live! How can IT provide seamless and secure mobile communications and collaboration for all? Join this live Webcast as IDG asks an expert panel...
- On-demand webinar - 7 Keys to Service Catalog Implementation Success Watch this webinar to learn 7 crucial keys to make your service catalog a success! All Mobile Security White Papers | Webcasts