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BlackBerry maker Research In Motion sets up facility in India to help with surveillance

Reuters
Oct 28, 2011 at 12:37pm IST

Mumbai: Research In Motion has set up a facility in Mumbai to help the Indian government carry out lawful surveillance of its BlackBerry services, the Wall Street Journal said, citing people familiar with the matter.

RIM gave India access to its consumer services, including its Messenger services, in January this year after authorities raised security concerns, but said it could not allow monitoring of its enterprise email.

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RIM partly assuaged India by setting up the small Mumbai facility earlier this year to handle surveillance requests from India, the WSJ reported.

RIM sets up surveillance facility in Mumbai

RIM has set up a facility to help the Indian govt carry out surveillance of its BlackBerry services.

India can submit the name of a suspect its investigators want to wiretap, and RIM will return decoded messages for that individual, as long as it is satisfied the request has legal authorization, it said.

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RIM was not available for comment outside regular Canadian business hours.

The new facility will handle lawful intercept requests for consumer services including the BlackBerry Messenger chat service, the paper said.

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India saw the move as a positive step, but would prefer an arrangement where it has the ability to decode messages itself, so that it can conduct surveillance without disclosing the names of suspects to RIM, the Journal reported.

India still has no method to intercept and decode BlackBerry enterprise email, which is used by corporate customers and features a higher level of encryption than consumer email and instant messaging, the report said.

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