BlackBerry has acquired privately-held German firm Secusmart as part of its drive to emerge as the handset provider of choice for security-conscious clients such as government agencies and big businesses.
Secusmart, specialising in voice and data encryption, had a partnership with one-time business phone giant, providing BlackBerry 10 users with its Secusuite for encrypted transmission of emails and texts, secure browsing and encrypted filing.
The companies said Secusuite-enabled BlackBerrys were already in use by German government agencies, ministers and leaders including chancellor Angela Merkel.
Following its decline in the consumer mobile market with the emergence of Apple and Android-based smartphones, the company had been trying to reposition itself as the provider of highly secure communications for publicity shy corporates in the private and public sector.
BlackBerry chief John Chen said the acquisition of Secusmart underscored the company's focus on addressing growing security costs and threats ranging from individual privacy to national security, The Register reported.
He added the acquisition bolstered the company's security solutions with leading voice and data encryption and anti-eavesdropping technologies, and furthered BlackBerry's security leadership in end-to-end mobile solutions.
According to Secusmart's managing director, Dr Hans-Christoph Quelle, the Secusuite solution already met German federal and NATO security requirements for restricted communications.
BlackBerry said in a statement today, "BlackBerry has entered into an agreement to acquire Secusmart GmbH."
The transaction was subject to the satisfaction of certain customary conditions, including the receipt of regulatory approvals, according to the Canadian handset maker.
Chen said, the company was always improving its security solutions to keep up with the growing complexity of enterprise mobility - with devices being used for more critical tasks - and to store more critical information as security attacks became more sophisticated.
He added, the acquisition of Secusmart underscored the firm's focus on addressing growing security costs and threats ranging from individual privacy to national security.
BlackBerry and Secusmart have previously partnered to offer Secusmarts technology to customers with the most demanding security needs. The SecuSUITE for BlackBerry 10 solution was last year selected by Germany's Federal Office for Information Security for classified communications for the country's highest public officials.
According to Secusmart managing director, Hans-Christoph Quelle, the transaction was a fantastic opportunity to accelerate growth in the market for high-end secure communications solutions, driven by the need to combat electronic eavesdropping and data theft.