BBM Protected was released ahead of schedule back in June with its primary focus being on “enterprise customers in regulated industries with BBOS devices and BlackBerry 10 smartphones operating in work space only mode” as stated by BlackBerry, and it’s just been rolled out to Balance devices as well.
For those who aren’t aware BlackBerry Balance is a feature within the BB10 OS that makes it possible for consumers to balance out their work life and personal life on their BlackBerry device. BBM Protected is a more secure version of the BBM we all know save for its higher security (it uses FIPS 140-2 validated cryptographic module to secure messages) which makes it a viable option for consumers in the workplace.
This new release (what BlackBerry calls phase 2) makes it possible for consumers utilizing BYOD (Bring Your Own Device), Balance, COPE (Company Owned, Personally Enabled), and COBO (Company Owned, Business Operated) policies to use BBM Protected.
BBM Protected can be activated via employer IT departments through the BES console as before, and you won’t notice a difference between it and the consumer version. In fact BBM Protected is 100% compatible with even the consumer version, allowing encrypted messages to be sent to other BBM Protected users while non-encrypted messages can still be sent to family and friends.