BlackBerry buying Good Technology to deepen device security

BlackBerry is buying mobile security company Good Technology to increase the privacy controls of its OS management tools, apps, devices and cloud portfolios.

"We will be able to provide even stronger cross-platform capabilities--ensuring customers won't have to make any sacrifices in operating systems, deployment models, or any level of privacy and security in their mobile environments," BlackBerry COO Marty Beard said in a blog post.

Good Technology serves more than 6,200 organizations, including leaders across healthcare, and BlackBerry partners with the top five largest managed healthcare companies, according to a BlackBerry announcement. The combination of technologies, according to Good CEO Christy Wyatt, will provide deeper security within the Internet of Things strategy that BlackBerry is advancing, as well as for its its mHealth device landscape.

"In addition to smartphones and tablets running iOS, Android, Windows Phone, BlackBerry 10 and BlackBerry OS, Good will enable BlackBerry to add support for wearables," Wyatt said, noting it's a focus for Good already regarding Apple Watch and Android Wear.

In late July, BlackBerry revealed how everyday healthcare devices, specifically smart IV infusion pumps used in care settings, are vulnerable and open to malicious hacking. In a live demo a BlackBerry hacker illustrated how the device can be used as an easy path for hackers to alter medication, access a provider's Wi-Fi network and access a facility's network housing valuable private and confidential data records.

The $425 million Good acquisition, expected to close in the third quarter, is the latest move by BlackBerry to, among other things, attain greater traction in the competitive mHealth device market.

BlackBerry reportedly also is considering building a new device specific to the healthcare industry that would feature bacteria-fighting technology. It is teaming with Cisco Systems and ThoughtWire to build a mobile messaging and alert system for Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital in Canada.

For more information:
- read the blog post
- here's the BlackBerry announcement