Privoro-Samsung partnership provides trusted control over smartphone radios and sensors
We’re excited to share that Privoro and Samsung have partnered to provide a powerful new security capability: high-assurance control over the radios, sensors and other hardware peripherals within Samsung’s flagship mobile devices. These new hardware controls allow individuals and organizations at risk of nation-state attacks to prevent the phone they carry from being used against them to track their location and monitor their communications and data.
Starting with Samsung’s Galaxy S22, a hardware-to-hardware integration between Privoro’s SafeCase and Samsung’s Hardware Device Manager (HDM) enables independent control of a phone’s hardware peripherals – beginning with the cellular radio and extending to other radios and sensors over time. The integration utilizes two different hardware systems isolated from one another, removing any single point of failure. This provides certainty that sensor and radio hardware can be disabled even if the phone’s operating system or apps have been compromised.
With their phone’s cellular radio truly disabled, a Galaxy S22 user is protected from local attacks such as cell phone surveillance by mobile tracking solutions commonly used to intercept and monitor calls, messages and location data. The joint solution also protects against remote attacks, including those leveraging the cellular baseband radios. In the event that the phone’s software (operating system or apps) has been compromised, audio masking and camera blocking integrated into SafeCase ensure no audio or video data can be captured from the device to eavesdrop on the user and their environment.
Dramatically lowering the risk that a phone could be used to spy on its owner, this joint solution allows a mobile device to be safely carried and used in high-risk environments, at home or overseas. The ability to enable and disable radios in hardware stops radio-specific location tracking with high certainty while still enabling other capabilities on their phone, something not possible with Faraday cage solutions. Critically, a user can go dark on their cellular network to avoid monitoring at any given time.
This two-system, defense-in-depth approach creates a foundation for trusted mobility for security-conscious organizations like defense and research agencies within the Federal government. No longer forced to choose between agility and security, these organizations can safely use phones to execute their missions.
And, for individuals most likely to be targeted by spyware, including CEOs, lawyers, investors, journalists, activists, celebrities and high-net-worth individuals, this new capability brings peace of mind that their phones aren’t being used against them, a critical shield against the invisible threat posed by modern cyberweapons.