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Govt plans to take over BlackBerry infra in Mumbai

After being reluctant in sharing information, BlackBerry is now been complying with the govt

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The government plans to take possession of the server and other infrastructure placed by (formerly Research In Motion) in Mumbai to test the solution offered by the smartphone maker for legal interception of internet communication.

According to an internal note of the telecom ministry, prepared after testing the interception of various services of BlackBerry by central security agencies, it was recommended to initiate a process to take over the possession of Research In Motion (RIM) infrastructure created at Mumbai for which a suitable agreement may be entered between the Department of Telecommunication and Canada-based RIM, manufacturer of the smartphone. After initially being reluctant to share information, BlackBerry has now been complying with the requirements of the government to ensure that all its services are intercepted in readable format and in real time, as and when required by the security agencies.

Giving details of the findings of the tests carried out, the security agencies said there was an urgent need for decrypting the internet browsing services being offered on the smartphone by April this year as the BlackBerry team had been able to provide only a temporary solution to this.

The attachments with the emails generated under the (BIS) from the smartphone also could not be downloaded in real time, it was stated. It was also recommended that there was a need for negotiating with BlackBerry to provide Personal Identification Number (PIN) and International Mobile Equipment Identification (IMEI) list for all BlackBerry handsets.

With respect to to resolution, the tested solution is apparently satisfactory for all the handsets officially shipped to India. With regard to handsets shipped to other countries, BlackBerry intimated that PIN to IMEI correlation in such cases can be obtained through BlackBerry public safety office, the note said.

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