Colombia’s president encrypts his communications for state security

Ten days after President Gustavo Petro’s inauguration, an arrangement was made to purchase 50 unique licenses in the country to prevent interceptions or leakage of information via phone calls or text messages. The technological tool will be installed on the mobile phones of people closest to the president.

Mobile encryption licenses have clear specifications. Among them, the military-grade security capability, as the justification for the contract mentions existing shortcomings in terms of security with regard to communications in the Palace and the Chief’s trusted team.

The entity responsible for conducting the procurement with its initial study was the Administrative Division of the Presidency of the Republic (Dapre). From there they explained that while it is true that many organizations protect their data and information with firewalls, anti-virus applications and encrypted email implementation, there are still shortcomings in smart devices –smart phoneTo become one of the biggest threat vectors in the infrastructure of organizations.

The head of the information technology and systems field in the authority indicated in previous studies that: “There is no secure communications service on any platform, so finding licenses for Cellcrypt software, as the most appropriate solution to the entity’s needs at present.”

As mentioned, a technological program cannot be traditional. It must comply with sophisticated tools, which, according to the presidency, only one company can provide in Colombia, since it is the only company that provides this type of service at the governmental level in the region. Among the required characteristics: Must be approved by the US National Institute of Standards and Technology and have certifications from Niap, NATO and CNSA.

Your encryption system must be Post Quantum end-to-end, which means that calls must be routed through the mobile device’s data connection.

In addition, it must allow full authentication of all parties to the call; Eliminate the risks of character rape, thus avoiding impersonation.

Among its functions are ensuring absolute privacy and protecting conversations between smartphones. Not only in traditional calls and messages, but also in attachments, audios and photos. These licenses must contain group messaging and ensure that no one outside can access what is being discussed in such video-calling meetings with a communication capacity of up to 200 people.

“It should allow the realization of video calls: enable the realization of encrypted video calls between users one by one,” they noted in the contractual process documents.

The Presidency contracts directly with NAVGIS CORPORATION SAS because, according to it, there is no other company in Colombia that facilitates the supply of software licenses, and it is in turn responsible for their installation and maintenance.

When reviewing the contracting process in the Effective Purchasing portal, it is clear that the cost of the 50 licenses is $62,475,000, which means that one unit is equal to $1,249,500. This value includes the support service. The license will be for one year.

It is expected that, after the contract is awarded, there will be a two-month fee to comply. So no later than October 17, 50 cell phones deemed appropriate by the president and his advisory team will have a proven license to encrypt their conversations and messages.

week He met sources from the Casa de Nariño who initially founded President Gustavo Petro, It will be the members of his own government and state security agencies that will have access to the advanced licenceAll for the sake of state security.

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