UPSTART SMARTPHONE DESIGNER Microsoft's Windows Phone 8 mobile operating system has been given the thumbs up from the US and Canadian government, gaining FIPS 140-2 certification.
FIPS 140-2 certification means that the US government considers Windows Phone 8 secure enough to be used by its employees, thanks to the cryptographic algorithms that the software uses to protect sensitive data.
This means that Microsoft can now promote the mobile operating system in new markets, such as financial and healthcare institutions where the protection of sensitive data is a key requirement.
Microsoft announced the news on its Windows Phone 8 blog today. It said, "This week Windows Phone 8 reached an important new security milestone, earning a key government accreditation called FIPS 140-2.
"This is important news particularly for our US and Canadian government customers, as well as other industries that value FIPS 140-2 validation."
Windows Phone 8 received FIPS 140-2 validation for a total of nine cryptographic certificates, which could see Microsoft boosting Windows Phone's share of the enterprise market. This is bad news for rival Blackberry, whose Blackberry 10 operating system recently received similar certification for its security features.
It's worth noting that both Apple and Samsung also received similar approval recently from the US government, so now Microsoft has to convince government and enterprise customers to choose a Nokia Lumia 1020 over an iPhone 5S or a Samsung Galaxy S4.
Microsoft still has to get approval from the US Department of Defence (DoD) to use Windows Phone 8 on its secure networks. µ
Users in the UK have until 11am Saturday to push the button
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