BlackBerry gets FIPS 140-2 nod

Research In Motion Ltd. of Waterloo, Ontario, yesterday announced that its Java-based BlackBerry wireless e-mail devices have received Federal Information Processing Standard 140-2 cryptographic validation.

RIM's president, Mike Lazaridis, will give the FOSE 2003 keynote speech tomorrow at 9 a.m. at Washington's new convention center.

The FIPS 140-2 validation applies to the BlackBerry 6700, 6500, 6200 and 5800 models' encryption firmware. Earlier BlackBerry models won FIPS 140-1 approval in 2001.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology set the 140-1 standard in 1994 and its replacement, 140-2, in 2001. Federal agencies are required to use FIPS-validated encryption products for sensitive but unclassified information. The full list of approved cryptographic modules under both standards appears at

BlackBerry devices can operate over Code Division Multiple Access, DataTAC, Global System for Mobile communications, Mobitex and Nextel wireless networks, RIM said.

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