India pressures carriers over BlackBerry

Dylan Bushell-Embling
10 Aug 2010

The fate of the BlackBerry is still up in the air in India and Saudi Arabia.

In India, the Home Ministry has called a meeting with telecom operators to address its security concerns over BlackBerry data services.

Mobile officials are bound by their license agreements to allow security agencies to access data transmissions under some conditions, a ministry official told the Hindustan Times.

Even if RIM resists allowing access to encrypted data sent with BlackBerry devices, “Indian telecom service providers can't violate their agreements with the government,” the official said.

The meeting is expected to take place this week.

In Saudi Arabia, BlackBerry messaging services are still operational after the passing of a second deadline to make its messaging data available for surveillance. The country's mobile operators are awaiting instructions on whether to suspend messaging services, FT.comreported.

Services had scheduled to be suspended on Friday, but the CITC had given RIM an extra 48 hours to comply with demands to make data sent via BlackBerrys available for state surveillance. This deadline has now also passed.

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