March 20, 2018 / 12:17 PM / a month ago

BlackBerry's shares rise after software security pact with Microsoft

(Reuters) - BlackBerry Ltd’s U.S.-listed shares rose nearly 6 percent in premarket trading on Tuesday after the company said it would partner with Microsoft Corp to provide security for flagship Office apps used by businesses.

A posed Blackberry smartphone is seen at the Research in Motion (RIM) headquarters in Waterloo, November 16, 2009. REUTERS/Mark Blinch/Files

The partnership comes at a time when companies are ramping up their cybersecurity capabilities after a wave of attacks on high-profile companies pointed to security flaws.

BlackBerry has focused on developing security software since it stopped making smartphones in 2016 after failing to compete with Android phones and Apple Inc’s iPhones.

As part of the partnership, the Canadian software maker’s platform, BlackBerry Enterprise Bridge, will allow businesses to securely access Microsoft’s apps such as Excel, Word and PowerPoint on smartphones.

Shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange do not trade before markets open.

A BlackBerry logo is seen during the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain February 28, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman/Files

Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur

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