RIM offers open BlackBerry to Indian security agencies

Robert Clark
03 Aug 2010

Facing bans in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states, BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion (RIM) has agreed to allow Indian security agencies to monitor its services.

Executives have offered to allow Indian security agencies to monitor corporate email and to open up access to consumer email within 15 days, the Economic Times reported, quoting a Department of Telecommunications (DoT) internal documents.

The company had been given a deadline at the end of July to ensure that its email and web services “that can be read by security and intelligence agencies,” the paper said.

In meetings with Indian officials on July 27 and July 30, RIM also promised to provide tools to allow eavesdropping on its BlackBerry Messenger IM app within six to eight months.

RIM is to provide further details to the DoT today, after which the home ministry and Intelligence Bureau will make the final decision.

BlackBerry services provided by mobile operators Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Essar, Loop and Tata are already capable of being monitored. RIM, which has nearly 1 million customers in India, said it was working with other operators to provide access to BlackBerry data within 15 days.

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