Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Nokia Strengthens Smartphone Portfolio

Nokia today announced the Nokia E6 and the Nokia X7, two new smartphones aimed at business people and entertainment enthusiasts. The two devices are the first Nokia smartphones to contain the updated Symbian software nick-named 'Symbian Anna.

"With these new products and more Symbian devices and user enhancements coming in the near future, we are confident we can keep existing Nokia smartphone customers engaged, as well as attract new first-time and competitor smartphone users," said Jo Harlow, head of Nokia's Smart Devices business

The Nokia E6 is a sleek business smartphone with a full QWERTY keypad and a high resolution touch display. The Nokia E6 offers exceptional battery life and the best out-of-the-box Microsoft messaging experience on a business smartphone, including access to Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft Communicator Mobile and Microsoft SharePoint.

The Nokia X7 is an entertainment-focused smartphone with a large 4" display ideal for gaming, and an 8 Megapixel camera for capturing pictures and HD-quality video.

The Nokia E6 and Nokia X7 are also the first smartphones to contain the complete update of the Symbian software user experience. This update offers a host of usability enhancements, including fresh, new icons, improved text input, a faster internet browsing experience and a refreshed Ovi Maps application with improved search and new public transport routes. The renewed software also offers a strong set of new features aimed at business users in particular, including true enterprise grade security with hardware accelerated encryption, and new e-mail features such as full meeting request support.

Handheld Group Wins Large Public Transportation Tender

The Handheld Group has been awarded the contract to supply the Netherlands Railways (Nederlandse Spoorwegen, NS) with more than 10,000 rugged Nautiz handhelds, 6,000 of which will be the Nautiz 'eTicket Pro'.

The NS European tender was the largest tender in the world for rugged PDAs in the public transportation sector during the past 12 months and one of the largest projects in the world for rugged handheld devices for all business verticals.

The contract was won by a consortium, HS Mobility, formed by Handheld Group together with the Dutch software partner company Sigmax B.V. The contract to supply more than 10,000 rugged PDAs extends over five years with the majority being deployed during 2011.

"The Nautiz eTicket Pro was selected by the personnel that will actually be using the device, after we determined it met the requirements set in the tender," said Jasper van Zanten of Netherlands Railways. "Especially at this scale, consulting the end users during the tender process is a pro-active way to create a solid base of user acceptance."

The Nautiz eTicket Pro rugged PDA, designed specifically for payment transactions and validations within the public transportation market, was developed in collaboration with Arcontia. The integrated smart card reader supports near field communication (NFC) for mobile applications, smart posters and tickets, including both passive reader mode and active peer-to-peer (P2P) mode. The built-in reader complies with all the latest e-ticketing requirements in public transportation, supporting a broad range of contactless standards, including the entire Mifare family.

The Nautiz eTicket Pro comes with an 806 MHz processor and advanced features such as an integrated 3-megapixel camera with autofocus, an integrated 2-D imager, WLAN, Bluetooth, 3G cellular capabilities and GPS. The operating system is Windows Mobile 6.1, and the device offers 256 MB of RAM and 512 MB of built-in Flash storage. It includes three integrated SAM (Secure Access Model) slots, which can work in parallel independently of each other for extended performance. The rechargeable 4400 mAh Li-ion battery provides more than a full day's work on a single charge. The transflective VGA colour display and touch screen provide sharp and clear resolution even while working outdoors.

NXP and UPM Extend Collaboration to Provide Easy Access to NFC Tags

NXP Semiconductors N.V. and UPM RFID today announced collaboration to provide easier access to near field communication (NFC) tags for use in a variety of mobile applications. As part of this agreement, NXP will provide the NFC ICs and UPM RFID will design and manufacture the NFC tags and inlays.

NFC tags are an essential component in any NFC-based system, typically containing information that can be accessed by an NFC enabled device. Data can be easily written to and stored in these tags, which are used in a variety of applications such as peer-to-peer data exchange (e.g. business cards), location-based advertisements, loyalty programs and discount coupons.

"In order to successfully develop the NFC ecosystem, we need to ensure that access to NFC tags is hassle free. We're therefore pleased to be working closely with UPM RFID to deliver on this promise to the market," said Chris Feige, General Manager, Tagging and Authentication Business, NXP Semiconductors. "Their expertise in high-volume tag production combined with our focus on NFC tag technology will truly enable the development of innovative and creative implementations of near field communication."

3.5 Million Texans at Risk from Identity Fraud

The Texas Comptroller's office will begin sending letters tomorrow, to notify a large number of Texans whose personal information was inadvertently disclosed on an agency server that was accessible to the public. The records of about three and a half million people were erroneously placed on the server with personally identifying information.

The records contained the names and mailing addresses of individuals. The records also included Social Security numbers, and to varying degrees also contained other information such as dates of birth or driver's license numbers - all the numbers were embedded in a chain of numbers and not in separate fields.

The information was in data transferred by the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS), the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) and the Employees Retirement System of Texas (ERS).

The data files transferred by those agencies were not encrypted as required by Texas administrative rules established for agencies. In addition to that, personnel in the Comptroller's office incorrectly allowed exposure of that data. Several internal procedures were not followed, leading to the information being placed on a server accessible to the public, and then being left on the server since early last year without being purged as required by internal procedures. The mistake was discovered the afternoon of March 31, at which time the agency began to seal off public access to the files. The agency has also contacted the Attorney General's office to conduct an investigation on the data exposure and is working with them.

"I deeply regret the exposure of the personal information that occurred and am angry that it happened," Texas Comptroller Susan Combs said. "I want to reassure people that the information was sealed off from any public access immediately after the mistake was discovered and was then moved to a secure location. We take information security very seriously and this type of exposure will not happen again."

The Comptroller views the protection of personal information as a serious issue. She will be working with the Legislature to advance legislation to enhance information security as outlined in the Protecting Texans' Identities report she released in December. This would include the designation of Chief Privacy Officers at each agency as well as the creation of an Information Security Council in the state.

VASCO's DIGIPASS as a Service available for Google AppsT

VASCO Data Security International, Inc. announces today that its DIGIPASS as a Service platform is now available for Google AppsT.

DIGIPASS as a Service is VASCO's cloud-based authentication offering for web based applications. Application providers are increasingly aware about the security risk static passwords pose and accelerate investments in strong user authentication to protect end-users' business-critical information. Google AppsT is a hosted service for communication and affairs tools, designed for businesses of all sizes. The web-based messaging and collaboration apps do not require any hardware or software installation and only minimal administration. As all data is stored online, access control is an all-important matter. Password security is known to be the weakest link in a security infrastructure. DIGIPASS as a Service.

Making the DIGIPASS as a Service offering available for Google AppsT is the evident next step in the development of cloud based authentication for the business-to-employee (B2E) segment focusing on employee's security needs. Earlier, VASCO launched its hosted authentication services for the B2B segment.

In a first phase, DIGIPASS as a Service for B-to-B was launched. Now, the second phase has taken off: DIGIPASS as a Service targets the B-to-E-market. Employees are indeed the end-users of Google AppsT. The third phase in the roll-out will focus on the B-to-C market. Typical consumer applications that VASCO wants to secure are online gaming, e-commerce or social networks.

"DIGIPASS as a Service meets the growing need of application providers to add strong user authentication to their applications in a cloud-based offering", says Ken Hunt, Founder, Chairman and CEO of VASCO Data Security.

Prepaid 2011


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