Would You Buy an NSA-Proof Smartphone?
"Technology was supposed to make our lives better. Instead, we have lost our privacy. We have become enslaved," says the ominous voice-over in an ad for the Blackphone. "Now, it's time for a change."
The Blackphone is a new smartphone designed by an international team of cryptographers and security experts, and is the pet project of a Switzerland-based joint venture between Silent Circle and Geeksphone. "What we're trying to do is to make a smartphone whose whole purpose is to protect users' privacy," said Phil Zimmerman, President of Silent Circle. A montage of headlines about Edward Snowden and the NSA appear in the video, making it clear that the smartphone's developers feel their product will find a niche with consumers wanting to avoid the government's prying eyes.
The phone's operating system, called PrivatOS, is a modified version of Android "with an additional security measure that allows for encrypted messages," according to Javier Aguera, CEO of Geeksphone. Details about the exact nature of the OS and its protections are scarce though, as the company is keeping information to a minimum before the phone's official launch at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on February 24. Read more about the Blackphone and watch the ad at Mashable.
Readers, how interested are you in a smartphone that protects your privacy? Although pricing for the Blackphone is still a mystery, how much would you be willing to pay? Share your thoughts in the comments below.