Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Mobile & Wireless

Ziklag Brings Hardened Android Phones to the Enterprise

Mobile security firm Ziklag Systems has launched Fortress Fone, a smartphone pre-loaded with a hardened version of the Android operating system to protect enterprises and users from attacks.

Mobile security firm Ziklag Systems has launched Fortress Fone, a smartphone pre-loaded with a hardened version of the Android operating system to protect enterprises and users from attacks.

Some organizations just can’t take the chance of data being exposed on employee mobile devices. Some environments are sensitive enough that all phone calls and text messages need to be encrypted. In some cases, the only way to completely secure the infrastructure is to deploy mobile devices that have been hardened and customized to be hacker-proof.

Ziklag Systems believes that its new Fortress Fone, a Samsung Galaxy smartphone running a hardened version of the Android operating system, will bring secure mobile devices to the enterprise. The government has been experimenting with customized secure phones for the past few years. The Fortress Fone aims to protect enterprise users with on all three levels—the hardware, operating system, and all the applications running on the device, Ziklag said.

Fortress Fone “renders voice and data transmissions virtually impenetrable,” said Stephen Bryen, CEO of Ziklag.

The key feature of Fortress Fone is the hardened kernel to make the operating system practically hack-proof and built-in government-level encryption to protect all data and voice transmissions on the device, the company said.

The team completely replaced the existing Android kernel with one designed internally by Ziklag. The new kernel controls all the sensors, radios, cameras and microphones, USB port, flash memory and other high-risk elements inside the smartphone.

Ziklag uses a secure key management system for its Fortress Fone. Each phone is equipped with a removable security token which stores the encryption key, Bryen told SecurityWeek. The token works with a specially designed app to secure the phone.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Since the enterprise manages the key within its own infrastructure, there is no risk of a man-in-the-middle attacks to intercept the key or other kinds of cryptographic attacks, Bryen said. Along with 256-bit AES encryption, Ziklag implements the NSA-defined standards for securing mobile devices.

When a customer gets the Fortress Fone, everything is already installed and configured. The handset is already loaded with the hardened kernel and operating system, and all necessary modifications have already been made in the laboratory, Bryen said. Ziklag also pre-installs the secure SD card, which stores the encryption key and is approved under the NSA Common Criteria program, prior to shipping the handset.

Currently, the Fortress Fone is available only on Samsung Galaxy handsets, the company said.

Intended for the enterprise, the Fortress Fone is designed specifically to work with the Fortress Core Access Protection System (CAPSS). The organization sets up CAPSS as a secure cloud and all phone calls, whether they are between the computer to mobile device, or mobile-to-mobile, are handled by the system, Bryen said.

Users can make Fortress Fone calls only to other users with Fortress Fones, or to users who desktops and laptops are connected to CAPSS. Since CAPSS is acting as the backbone of all calls using the secure system, all voice and data transmissions are encrypted and protected, Ziklag said.

Organizations can also store large files and multi-media content in CAPSS so that users can access the content without trying to download them locally to the handset.

RelatedDepartment of Defense Makes Move Towards Android

Related: Russia Unveils Secure “Almost Android” Tablet To Keep Data Away From Google

Written By

Click to comment

Daily Briefing Newsletter

Subscribe to the SecurityWeek Email Briefing to stay informed on the latest threats, trends, and technology, along with insightful columns from industry experts.

SecurityWeek’s Threat Detection and Incident Response Summit brings together security practitioners from around the world to share war stories on breaches, APT attacks and threat intelligence.


Securityweek’s CISO Forum will address issues and challenges that are top of mind for today’s security leaders and what the future looks like as chief defenders of the enterprise.


Expert Insights

Related Content

Mobile & Wireless

Infonetics Research has shared excerpts from its Mobile Device Security Client Software market size and forecasts report, which tracks enterprise and consumer security client...

Mobile & Wireless

Apple rolled out iOS 16.3 and macOS Ventura 13.2 to cover serious security vulnerabilities.

Cybersecurity Funding

Los Gatos, Calif-based data protection and privacy firm Titaniam has raised $6 million seed funding from Refinery Ventures, with participation from Fusion Fund, Shasta...

Mobile & Wireless

Critical security flaws expose Samsung’s Exynos modems to “Internet-to-baseband remote code execution” attacks with no user interaction. Project Zero says an attacker only needs...


Many in the United States see TikTok, the highly popular video-sharing app owned by Beijing-based ByteDance, as a threat to national security.The following is...

Artificial Intelligence

Two of humanity’s greatest drivers, greed and curiosity, will push AI development forward. Our only hope is that we can control it.

Mobile & Wireless

Technical details published for an Arm Mali GPU flaw leading to arbitrary kernel code execution and root on Pixel 6.

Mobile & Wireless

Two vulnerabilities in Samsung’s Galaxy Store that could be exploited to install applications or execute JavaScript code by launching a web page.