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RIM says it did not give the Indian government access to BES corporate email

Posted: , by Alan F.

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RIM says it did not give the Indian government access to BES corporate email
"The fact is that BlackBerry enterprise communications in India remain secure and encrypted. No change has been made or ever can be made in India or anywhere."-David Patterson, RIM's Head of government relations
The Economic Times of India is reporting that it has heard from officials in the country's telecom department that RIM has given the Indian government access to BES corporate email. This has been denied by RIM.  But the problem with the story is that even if RIM wanted to, it cannot read the email that comes through the server because it is secure and encrypted. This is not the first time that RIM has had to issue a denial over the same story.

India is one of the few areas in the world where BlackBerry is still expanding its sales. RIM plans on aggressively expanding in the region despite this continuous battle with the government over encrypted emails. The Canadian based manufacturer has repeatedly told the Indian government that it does not have the encryption keys which remain in the hands of its corporate customers. Last January, RIM gave the Indian government access to its BlackBerry Messenger service and other consumer functions as the Indian government feared for its safety, worrying that encrypted messages could help its enemies plan an attack. At the time, RIM vowed that it would not allow monitoring of corporate email. David Patterson, head of RIM's government relations, said he is sure that the Indian government realizes how important encryption is to attracting foreign business and that the country wouldn't make requests that could damage foreign investment in the country.

The story, posted on the Economic Times of India website, cites telecom department officials and certain documents that have been reviewed, in saying that RIM had provided a solution to the Indian government to allow them to monitor business email.
"RIM is providing an appropriate lawful access solution that enables India's telecom operators to be legally compliant with respect to their BlackBerry consumer traffic, to the same degree as other smartphone providers in India, but this does not extend to secure BlackBerry enterprise communications."-RIM statement
source: Reuters

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posted on 02 Aug 2012, 16:43 2

1. snowgator (Posts: 3187; Member since: 19 Jan 2011)


I need a Civics class I guess. I understand ANY government worrying about illegal communication in this day and age, but BlackBerry has been very specific in answering concerns. So, if the Government of India is worried, why not verify the communication with the companies they are worried about?

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 19:41 3

2. QWIKSTRIKE (Posts: 827; Member since: 09 Mar 2010)


Why not go out of business by betraying your customer base. It's business as you don't know it you are naive to think that they can just give encryption keys to any corporation that the Indian government sees fit!

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 20:12

3. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5520; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


I suspect Indian media have it wrong - the Indian govt. got access to the BIS system. BES is specific to each customer server(s).

It came down to a simple question - do you want to do business in India? If yes, you give the govt. access. No access to the Indian govt., then they shut down traffic to and from your IP addresses in India. RIM can't exactly tell the Indian govt. where to put it.

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