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Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Financial Times, Wall Street Journal
In response to the UAE ban, RIM issued a statement to its customers on Monday assuring them that their data was secure. “RIM respects both the regulatory requirements of government and the security and privacy needs of corporations and consumers,” the company said. In Washington, a state department spokesman said the Obama administration was “disappointed” at the UAE decision. “It’s not about a Canadian company. It’s about what we think is an important element of democracy, human rights, and freedom of information and the flow of information in the 21st century ... It’s an argument that we make to countries like Iran and China. And it’s also an argument that we make to friends and allies of ours like the UAE,” the spokesperson said, FT writes. BlackBerrys pose a particular challenge to meeting government requirements for intercepting and monitoring telecom traffic because BlackBerry traffic is automatically encrypted/decrypted when it is sent or received, and travels via RIM’s data servers in Canada. RIM said the BlackBerry network was set up so that "no one, including RIM, could access" customer data, adding that it would "simply be unable to accommodate any request" for a key to decrypt the data, since the company doesn't have the key, writes WSJ. Most countries, however, have negotiated agreements with RIM that enable their security agencies to monitor and decipher this traffic, FT writes.

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