With more and more news and talks about mobile phones being possibly infected with virus software, Japanese mobile operator NTT DoCoMo and Network Associates announced that both companies have jointly developed a key technological element for a compact anti-virus engine, based on Network Associates' McAfee security technology, to protect future mobile communication services. The two companies have been jointly developing scanning technology for multimedia content, like e-mail, since May 2002.
The companies will continue to work toward offering a compact anti-virus engine, incorporating mobile specific technologies in mobile handsets for NTT DoCoMo, targeting by the end of 2004. In addition, the two companies will investigate the possibility of contributing the associated technology to international standardization organizations, while continuing to research and develop solutions to protect and enhance future mobile communication services.
Current mobile phone service is secure as it is a closed network. However, future mobile communication services are projected to expand globally with increasingly diverse functionality, while the mobile handset architecture will become more unified in terms of the operating system, standardization, and open specifications. As a result of this trend, it is possible that mobile environments may become increasingly vulnerable to malicious attacks compared to conventional mobile phones. The solution to this threat lies not only in securing the mobile network but also handsets, with the two approaches complementing each other. NTT DoCoMo's mobile communication technology and Network Associates' security technology will provide NTT DoCoMo's subscribers with a secure mobile environment with expanded usage for mobile multimedia services.