Sean Penn used BBM to keep in touch with drug kingpin

BlackBerry's messaging app. BBM, is getting plenty of free publicity today. Considering the subject matter, the publicity might not be considered completely favorable. Rolling Stone has published actor Sean Penn's story about how he ended up visiting drug kingpin Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán Loera while the latter was hiding out from the authorities. Not only is BBM mentioned, Penn wrote how he had to use the Blackphone handset to handle encrypted communications.

Penn admits that he is not a techie, but his account of how he hooked up with the recently captured fugitive contained quite a few references to BBM. In fact, Penn used the messaging app to send a list of questions to "El Chapo," and the service was also used by various players in this real-life drama. For example, Mexican actress Kate del Castillo, who brokered the meeting, used BBM to stay connected to the drug kingpin. The drivers used by "El Chapo" to get Penn to the drug kingpin, relid on mesages sent via BBM to make sure that the route was clear.

BBM had once been a closed app, available to BlackBerry users only. Back in 2013, it was opened to both Android and iOS users. The company has made an effort to spruce up the app by adding discussion groups called Channels, and by selling stickers. While BlackBerry wouldn't be pleased with the reason for BBM's use in the story, the messaging app is receiving tons of free publicity for being included in the Rolling Stone article that everyone is talking about today.

source: RollingStone via Gizmodo


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