Sky and Space signs Check Point for satellite cybersecurity

Check Point has been signed on to provide cybersecurity services for nano-satellite telecommunications provider Sky and Space Global's space and ground communication platforms.

Australian Securities Exchange-listed telecommunications company Sky and Space Global (SAS) has announced signing Check Point Software Technologies to provide cybersecurity across its nano-satellite telecommunications services.

Under a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Check Point, its cybersecurity solutions will be integrated into SAS's communications platforms in its space and ground networks, with SAS already having commenced validation testing.

Check Point VP of Business Development Alon Kantor said the agreement would expand the security company's Infinity architecture.

"[We will] provide the highest level of threat prevention on all networks, including those in space," Kantor added.

The security announcement follows SAS signing its first binding commercial contract with a customer at the end of last month.

Under that contract, SAS will provide wholesale narrowband services for Sat-Space Africa via its already-deployed test nano-satellites the Three Diamonds, along with its Equatorial Constellation, which is due to be deployed next year.

"[Sat-Space Africa] had agreed to purchase all the available communication bandwidth that the company can provide from its initial Three Diamonds nano-satellite platform, and following the successful Three Diamonds launch and testing phase. With this now completed, the parties have executed this binding commercial contract," SAS said in August.

"Once the full Sky and Space Global Equatorial Constellation is deployed, potential revenues from customers via Sat-Space Africa will be between $10 million to $35 million annually."

The company said it is "rapidly" working on concluding binding commercial contracts with additional wholesale data operators.

SAS completed in-orbit testing on its first three nano-satellites in August, concluding that its constellation of commercial demonstration miniature satellites is able to transmit messages for 2,000km, with a pair of satellites transmitting messages while the third acts as a relay.

During the testing phase, SAS also achieved Doppler tracking, communication carrier lock, and establishment of the customer satellite link, exchanging data packets between space and Earth.

With its three satellites now fully certified by EU satellite maker GomSpace, SAS has begun the regulatory process with Ofcom in the United Kingdom to bring into use its International Telecommunication Union (ITU) filings for spectrum frequency licences.

SAS in January completed construction on the Three Diamonds ahead of creating its pilot network by launching the three nano-satellites off a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle owned by the Indian Space Research Organisation.

SAS, which in May last year raised $4.5 million to list on the ASX via a reverse takeover of Burleson Energy, is aiming to build a wholesale narrowband low-cost voice and data network through the provision of satellite services that it will sell to telco providers throughout equatorial Asia, South America, Central America, and Africa, as well as to shipping companies and airliners operating in those areas.

It is aiming to have 200 nano-satellites in orbit by 2020, in September last year purchasing four dedicated missions from Virgin Galactic to launch these mini satellites into space on its vehicle LauncherOne, which itself launches from atop a Boeing 747.

The four missions will carry several nano-satellites, with SAS signing a letter of intent with Virgin Galactic in June 2016 to use LauncherOne from 2018.

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