IBM offers Nokia server software to enterprises

Nokia and IBM have agreed to collaborate in providing secure mobile phone applications to enterprises in a move that could help...

Nokia and IBM have agreed to collaborate in providing secure mobile phone applications to enterprises in a move that could help the Finnish manufacturer penetrate the corporate market.

Under the agreement, IBM will act as a systems integrator for Nokia's mobile VPN (virtual private network) client software.

The software allows employees who use mobile phones based on the Symbian operating system to access their corporate networks securely. Symbian is part-owned by Nokia.

IBM will provide installation, maintenance, financing and consulting services for Nokia's mobile VPN system, the companies said.

Nokia's mobile VPN client software is a standards-based IPSec (Internet Protocol Security) product that supports both legacy and PKI (public key infrastructure) authentication.

The product is supported by Nokia's Security Service Manager software, an open-standard, over-the-air provisioning system for mobile security applications.

Over-the-air provisioning systems can help enterprises cut costs by reducing the maintenance work involved in installing VPN clients and updating security policies, said John Kirby, vice president of global wireless e-business services at IBM.

Several corporate applications can benefit from a secure mobile infrastructure, including calendars, messaging and intranet access, the companies said.

The mobile VPN agreement is the latest in a string of deals IBM and Nokia have signed in recent months. In April, they agreed to pursue the public WLAN (wireless LAN) market together.

In July, the companies agreed to collaborate in developing software for the secure delivery of digital content over wireless networks.

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