The Taiga Smart Phone is aimed at preventing data leaks.
The new Taiga phone was built by a Russian security company that is operated by Kaspersky Lab’s co-founder. The smartphone that is said to prevent Google and other apps from snooping on Taiga phone users.
Taiga phone was designed by Moscow-based InfoWatch Group and gets its name from the desolated forests of Siberia. This phone has its own Android-based firmware that lets apps run on the device but prohibits them from collecting data.
The phone also has a built-in agent that gives the administrator such as a corporate IT department — control over what apps will work on the device and what content the user can access or share.
“Most smartphone apps collect certain data on users and send it to outside servers,” said Natalya Kaspersky, head of InfoWatch. “When people use personal phones at work, their corporate emails, documents and job-related photos come under threat of being — maliciously or accidentally — leaked to third parties.”
InfoWatch is betting on demand in Russia amid concerns over user data collected by U.S.-based companies such as Google and Facebook. The first 50,000 Taiga phones, made in China, will be delivered to employees of Russian companies co-owned by the state. Potential markets also include Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates, where InfoWatch has opened offices.
Kaspersky co-founded anti-virus producer Kaspersky Lab and ran it before her divorce from partner Eugene Kaspersky. President Donald Trump recently restricted the use of Kaspersky Lab products by U.S. government entities over the firm’s alleged ties with the Russian government. Kaspersky now runs her own business and works in a Kremlin-backed working group on information-technology sovereignty.