Turkish technology giant Vestel to seek smartphone immune to wiretapping
Ahmet Can ISTANBUL / Hürriyet
Vestel is working onmanufacturinga local smartphone model at its production plant in Aegean proivnce of Manisa.The wiretapping debates that have dominated Turkey’s political agenda have shifted local smartphone manufacturers’ focus to developing systems that will minimize eavesdropping.
Turkish technology giant Vestel, which has been working on developing an indigenous smartphone model at its plant in the Aegean province of Manisa, has kicked off studies for a model that will have enhanced security measures.
“We will try to prevent wiretappings with security measures,” said Turan Erdoğan, CEO of Turkish electronics and domestic appliance maker Vestel.
“We are currently looking at solution alternatives. We are planning to offer these solutions to customers in 2014 if we get positive results in our tests,” he said.
The new system will be developed with the aim of protecting phones against eavesdropping threats with special software to be improved by Vestel engineers. The phone will cipher phone conversations and messages in order to prevent third parties from accessing the data.
Global market aim
Giving further information regarding the company’s smartphone that was inaugurated in September 2013, Erdoğan said the studies on the phone were continuing delicately.
“We know the smartphone issue doesn’t tolerate any mistakes. When Vestel makes a phone, it should meet the customer without any flaws. We are working overtime to solve even the smallest problem,” he said.
Vestel has been eagerly working to start the serial production of smartphones that it hopes to sell both in domestic and international markets, with the ambition of becoming one of the global players in the sector.
Scores of leaked tapes on YouTube have prompted a wide debate on the wiretapped phone conversations of top government officials, including Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and a number of aides and businessmen close to the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in connection with graft accusations. Turkey’s Telecommunications Directorate (TİB) revealed a recent report that more than half a million people were wiretapped in the last two years. A total
of 257,545 people were wiretapped in 2012, and 252,062 people were wiretapped in 2013, according to the TİB report.