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The U.S. Army has announced its selection of the Bantu Instant Messaging and Presence Platform for its Army Knowledge Online (AKO) portal site. The fully integrated Instant Messaging (IM) application will be available by early September, and the portal is expected to have over 3 million users by 2003. Setting the standard for security and reliability, Bantu is the leading provider of business-grade IM and presence solutions for enterprises and government agencies.

"Presence and IM will be integral components of the Army's online knowledge-management initiative," said Colonel Robert Coxe, Chief Technology Officer, U.S. Army. "Bantu's highly secure tools will enable AKO users worldwide to share enterprise information instantly and easily in a fully encrypted environment." By integrating presence technology into AKO, portal members will be able to see which colleagues are online and available to communicate. The AKO portal is one facet of the Army's effort to use information technology to leverage system-wide innovation in services, processes and knowledge creation.

"The Army's thorough evaluation and approval of Bantu's platform - particularly our patent-pending security -- validates the impact a secure IM solution can have in the government market, " said Larry Schlang, President and CEO of Bantu. "Their desire to integrate Bantu into the AKO also demonstrates the power of IM in large organizations seeking more efficient ways to collaborate. We're finding that corporations, government agencies and educational institutions are seeing this value more than ever before."

Bantu's contract with the Army includes the installation of the IM and Presence Platform in the Army's secure environment to be accessed by both classified and unclassified personnel. Bantu will also provide presence and IM within the Army White Pages, a worldwide locator service providing contact information for anyone with an AKO account.
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Title Annotation:Government Activity
Publication:EDP Weekly's IT Monitor
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 13, 2001
Next Article:Western Data Systems of Nevada Inc.

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