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Satellite startup promises communications network that can’t be hacked

14 Mar 2018, 01:41 UTC
Satellite startup promises communications network that can’t be hacked
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WASHINGTON — LeoSat has not even built a single satellite but has already booked $500 million worth of orders, its executives claim. In a crowded market for low-earth-orbit satellite communications, the company believes it has found its niche selling premium services to secrecy-obsessed clients, including the U.S. military.
“We’ve had a lot of interaction with DoD and combatant commands,” Michael Abad-Santos, senior vice president of LeoSat, told SpaceNews at the Satellite 2018 exposition. Based in Arlington, Virginia, LeoSat is recruiting investors with a goal to begin launching high-capacity broadband satellites in 2019 and have an operating constellation of anywhere from 78 to 108 spacecraft by 2022.
Among the early customers are multinational pharmaceutical companies that feverishly look for data communications systems that promise better protection from hackers.
“They’re all about protecting their intellectual property,” LeoSat CEO Mark Rigolle said in an interview. The pharmaceutical industry has globally dispersed research centers, he said. “They want to connect their scientists through distance collaboration but in a secure fashion.”
The military’s security demands just as stringent, if not more so, he said. What makes this system more secure than most? It’s an enterprise private network where data travels “end to end,” bypassing gateways ...

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