Protecting Bluetooth connections on a device

Bluetooth® wireless technology permits a Bluetooth enabled BlackBerry® device to open a wireless connection with other Bluetooth devices that are within a 10-meter range (for example, a hands-free car kit or wireless headset).

The device creates a Bluetooth profile, which specifies how applications on the device and on other Bluetooth devices connect and communicate. The device uses the Bluetooth profile to open serial connections to Bluetooth enabled devices using virtual serial ports.

You can use IT policies to manage a Bluetooth enabled device. By default, a Bluetooth enabled device that runs BlackBerry® Desktop Software version 4.0 or later includes the following security measures:
  • You or a user can turn off the Bluetooth wireless technology for the device.
  • The user must request a connection or pairing on the device with another Bluetooth device and type a passkey (also known as a shared secret key) to complete the pairing.
  • The user can specify whether to encrypt data sent to and from the device over a Bluetooth connection. The BlackBerry® Enterprise Solution uses the passkey to generate encryption keys.
  • The device prompts the user each time a Bluetooth device tries to connect to the device.

For more information, see Security for BlackBerry Devices with Bluetooth Wireless Technology.

Using CHAP to open a Bluetooth connection between the BlackBerry Desktop Software and a device

A Bluetooth® enabled BlackBerry® device can use CHAP to open a Bluetooth connection to the BlackBerry® Desktop Software. To open a Bluetooth connection, the device or BlackBerry Desktop Software can use CHAP to send a challenge. The device or BlackBerry Desktop Software can subsequently use the SHA-1 algorithm to calculate a response to the challenge or to validate the response of the other party, depending on which party started the process to open the Bluetooth connection.

When the device uses CHAP, the device never sends the device password over an unprotected connection. The device combines the challenge with the device password to authenticate with the BlackBerry Desktop Software.

For more information about CHAP, see RFC 1994.

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