Research in Motion’s Blackberry has found a solution for its Indian users. It will have a corporate forum which will allow the Indian government to get access to data which might be sensitive from a security point of view.
Previously the government had given a deadline until the 31st of August 2010 for RIM to conform with certain demands. The sore point has been the messaging service which is encrypted and has a lot of users using it for privacy.
What are Indian demands?
The government has wanted some clarifications from Blackberry since 2008. It seems it has set a deadline and looks a lot more serious on following through and if needed even banning Blackberry’s messaging service.
- Indian government wants a Blackberry’s server to be located in India. This is so that their solutions can be tested within the country.
- The government wants to be able to track or access encrypted data sent over the RIM messaging network for security purposes.
Blackberry has offered a solution that it will lead an industry forum to allow lawful access. This access will be given only on issues on security. This offer has got Blackberry a reprieve of 60 days.
What saved blackberry?
- The Common Wealth Games 2010 start in Delhi, India on the 3rd of October. This will obviously attract a lot of tourists from around the world. International criticism of banning RIM’s messaging service is what the Government might be trying to avoid.
- Considering there are over 1.2 million Blackberry users in India, the government might think twice before actually following through with a ban.
What could this mean to other companies?
- It is not clear what the plans are for the government for the future. But if RIM complies to demands for data access than Google and Skype might be the next companies which would need to give assurances to India’s telecom regulators.
- There is speculation that this might lead to people to move over to getting an iPhone or the latest from Nokia. But that seems unlikely as the service affected will only the messaging service.
- Also applications like Nimbuzz which already offers alternatives which comply with the regulations.
What do you think about the entire issues? Is RIM right to protect the privacy of its users or should it comply with regulators? Do drop in your comments.