Rim backtracks on security

The maker of the Blackberry, RIM has given up on marketing itself as the most secure company for businesses and has decided to hand over data to any oppressive regime that asks for it.

 

For years the Blackberry has provided businesses with encrypted goodness through a server that was based in Canada. This meant that not only were corporate secrets safe from rivals it meant that they could not be stolen by foreign governments.

 

All that is set to change thanks to a deal that has been done with the United Arab Emirates which will allow for all data to be stored locally where it can be searched by Arab governments.

Reuters quoted an analyst in the Middle East as saying that placing a RIM server in a country would be similar to handing that government a “master key” to the BlackBerry.

 

Similar deals are expected in other countries which have a big interest in getting their paws on foreign technology under the guise of “protecting the country from terrorism”.

 

It looked for a while that RIM was going stand up to such countries, but it looks like the outfit has decided that making money from them is the best way forward.

 

Saudi Arabia is reportedly Rim’s largest market in the Middle East, with about 700,000 BlackBerry users. It is also very interested in finding out what its subjects are doing.

 

Lebanon, Algeria, and India have pressured Rim as well and it is likely that they will get a server too.

 

However some analysts feel that Rim might have made a huge mistake in bowing down to governments in foreign parts.

 

Its biggest customers are in the US where its security was considered its selling point. While it is allowing spooks from any country that asks to sniff its data, corporates might as well be giving employees less secure iPhones or Android phones.