No solution yet to BlackBerry security issue

April 16th, 2008 - 1:00 am ICT by admin  

New Delhi, April 15 (IANS) A solution to the security concerns over BlackBerry services in India has still to be hammered out as its licensor Research-in-Motion (RIM) has sought more time from the Indian government to reach an agreement. Executives from the Canada-based firm, senior government officials, representatives from security agencies and services met Tuesday here for the second time after India raised concerns that BlackBerry services may be used by terrorist outfits as the e-mails between these cannot be intercepted.

RIM officials are believed to have sought time till the end of the month to explain their position and address the issues voiced by the government.

India has asked the multinational company, which has over 12 million users globally, to route all its calls and e-mails through servers based in India to allow security agencies intercept them in emergency. This is currently not possible as RIM has its servers in Canada.

Experts from RIM had already given demonstrations and presentations on the technicalities of BlackBerry services.

The company also held a meeting with the Indian home ministry last week.

Currently four telecom operators - Airtel, Vodafone, BPL and Reliance Communications - offer BlackBerry services in India to about 400,000 users. The users include the who’s who of India.

Meanwhile, sources in the telecom ministry said the government has asked the service providers to put brakes to some of the BlackBerry services.

India has also warned against strict action if RIM fails to come out with a viable solution to such a serious issue, sources said.

BlackBerry services were introduced in India in October 2004. The services came under the government’s scanner last year when an application by Tata Teleservices to launch a similar service was rejected over security concerns.

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