Duncan MacRae meets with mobile phone encryption provider, Silent circle, and UK luxury handset producer, Vertu, to discuss the security of personal and corporate data.
The Private Dining Room in a secluded area of Scott’s Restaurant in uber chic Mayfair, London, offers diners the perfect combination of both privacy and luxury.
It is perhaps apt then that this was the venue of choice for an IT security conference between Silent Circle and Vertu – two companies that have attempted to marry these qualities perfectly in their recent collaboration.
Earlier this year, luxury UK phone maker, Vertu, partnered with secure communication provider Silent Circle to provide end-to-end voice and text encryption worthy of its designer product. Now, each £7,000 Android-based Vertu Ti comes with a 12-month Silent Circle encryption service as standard.
Commenting on the team-up, Mike Janke, CEO and co-founder of Silent Circle, is not one to mince his words.
"We have what I like to call a ‘no jackass rule’," he explains. "If we don’t like a company, we don’t want to work with them and don’t want to be a part of what they do.
"At Silent Circle, we put together an all-star team and gravitated towards Perry Oosting and Vertu. They have the same type of customers as us – people who place high value on security and luxury, at a business and personal level."
Perry Oosting, CEO, Vertu, is no jackass, and was delighted to work with Janke’s team. He explains: "We met with a lot of companies because we’re not specialists in security. We met with about 10 different companies and Silent Circle is the one that stands out.
"The encryption is on the device and not on a server and, after talking to so many companies and taking at look at what Silent Circle do and what they can offer, we haven’t found anything anywhere else that comes close to that. And, because of that, we can now offer a unique customer service."
With the Silent Circle software, individuals can protect the likes of their text, file transfers, emails and conference calls.
Already benefitting from the Silent Circle encryption service are intelligence agencies, government departments, intelligence agencies, former heads of states, exiled leaders, Russian oligarchs, Persian sheiks and Hollywood celebrities. Even Prism whistlebower Edward Snowden has been offered a free subscription.