Data security: “our companies have become ultra-vulnerable”

by bold-lichterman

“We must offer data security solutions to the French without them coming into conflict with ethics” could we hear this morning during the third edition of Syntec Camp. This is all the difficulty encountered by publishers of biometrics or voice recognition systems, for example. A real balancing act to which the digital security sector is trying to respond with technological innovations and disruptions in practice.

The technology that authenticated Jérôme Cahuzac appeals to banks

The emergence of mobile phones, tablets and especially cloud upsets habits and demand. It is not a question here of adapting to this new digital situation, but rather of reviewing all the philosophical patterns of development. “We historically had perimeter security where an entire system was secure. We are now moving to an ‘airport’ model with which everyone can enter the confines of a system, but where all the security is focused on the data itself ”specifies a speaker in front of the attentive audience. A change of scale. Ideas and solutions diversify accordingly.


Specialized in voice biometric identification, the Spanish company Agnito already sees national security as its first market. Its solution allows voice authentication of an individual in the context of a telephone conversation. 30 seconds net is enough to create a recorded voice signature and only 7 seconds for identification during a two-person phone conversation. The company also offers authentication by pronunciation of a three-second sentence to unlock a terminal, for example. Proof of effectiveness, its “Batvox” technology was used by the scientific police – in addition to experts, phoneticians, etc. – to certify Jérôme Cahuzac’s voice in the key recording of the case. “The scientific police have already used our products for a long time, it is our historical market”, specifies its representative this morning.

Secure transmission channels rather than terminals

The possible uses are much more extensive. Banks – which the company hopes to win over in the coming years – could use its solution to satisfy customers who want to transact over the phone. Security on the one hand, concern on the other, the CNIL issues its authorization on a case-by-case basis, according to each use made of its technology, we immediately reassure Agnito.

The sector is testing, experimenting, testing. Because it is still only at the beginning of a new era. “You always have to accept a part of the risk because there is no certainty as to the perfect solution” specifies an editor. In the meantime, our companies have become ultra-vulnerable, ”said another during the discussion. IT security has become a crucial issue for groups, in particular those who sometimes manage entire fleets of mobile phones delivered to their employees, who exchange confidential data from them. Because of the difficulty in controlling their use, some no longer seek to secure the terminals themselves, but rather the data transmission channels. So at the source.


Thales is thus marketing Teopad, a device that allows smartphones to be divided into two – professional and personal part – in addition to protecting oral communications and information stored and exchanged. Some groups have for their part set up downloadable security systems in the form of software to avoid the vulnerability to which digital exchanges are subject. And there, two schools clash. “We regularly experience difficulties in having our applications validated on the App Store due to its closed and restrictive environment. Many publishers therefore refer to Android ”. As a result, while the iPhone is generally believed to be more secure, businesses are increasingly turning to Google’s mobile interface because “it is possible to add additional layers of security. and customizable according to needs ”specifies an editor. Small companies will therefore tend to approach the iPhone and large groups, able to develop their internal security systems, Android.

A B2B and B2C sector

But far from a purely B2B request (business to business, business to business, editor’s note), the battle is also being played out in the individual market. “More than 70% of French people consider that the security of smartphones, in particular in terms of data protection, is a major selling point according to our survey carried out by BVA” specifies immediately Vanryb, president of the college of publishers Syntec Numérique and from Avanquest Software. But their delay in this matter is glaring. Proof of this, we learn, in the noise of the corridors, that 70% to 80% of the information collected today by the intelligence services would be from open data.

The recent cases of espionage of global telecommunications by various Western intelligence agencies ultimately resulted in propelling and legitimizing the sector. We must therefore accelerate, innovate and propose offers. On average, 20% of the workforce is dedicated to research and development at software publishers. Good news for the French economy since more than three quarters of these jobs are located in France.


In this landscape, Synthèse Camp seeks to promote exchanges and partnerships between small businesses and large groups. “We will reward the best partnerships in June or July,” adds Mr. Vantryb amid optimism. “The next themes will probably be social networks or e-commerce, but security is likely to be back on the agenda at Syntec Camp. It’s a generic subject that will keep coming back to the news ”he concludes.

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