June 24, 2012

Obama using a secure GSM phone

In the previous post we presented a range of highly secure mobile phones. Because of their nature we almost never see officials using them, but here we have a rare picture of US president Obama using a Sectéra Wireless GSM Phone, made by General Dynamics and approved by the NSA for conversations up to the level of Top Secret:

President Obama using a Sectéra Wireless GSM Phone, March 19, 2011.
(White House photo by Pete Souza - click for a bigger version)

The picture shows president Obama giving the final authorization for the United States Armed Forces to begin a limited military action in Libya, in support of an international effort to protect Libyan civilians. This call was made during a short visit to Brazil.

Sitting next to Obama is his National Security Advisor Tom Donilon, using one of the two secure STE desk top telephone sets, which are always standing by in case the president has to make a phone call.

As can be seen in the bigger picture, the other STE phone seems to be used by another official, so probably for convenience, Obama was given the secure cell phone to participate in this conference call.

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In Dutch: Meer over het wetsvoorstel voor de Tijdelijke wet cyberoperaties