Row over BlackBerry services likely to be resolved
STAFF REPORT ISB: The BlackBerry company has partially accepted the governments terms with the expectation that it would never grant a backdoor to users data, but it is believed to cooperate with law enforcement agencies, sources confided to this correspondent.
It is to be mentioned here that BlackBerry has a similar arrangement in many countries including UAE and India. Under such an arrangement, the company hands over user information only if it is served with a valid warrant.Previously, BlackBerry was said to be planning to discontinue all its operations in Pakistan due to a tussle with the government over data privacy. The Canadian firm said that the government had asked it to allow backdoor access to BES user data.
The government gave the phone maker an ultimatum to either comply with its demands or end all operations in the country. BlackBerry chose the second option, and its decision to protect privacy was lauded by many at a time when surveillance and encryption are burning issues.Pakistani authorities asked for a backdoor to services like BES and BBM owing to the ongoing turbulence in the region. In July, the PTA asked all telecom operators to end their support for BlackBerry servers for security reasons. Initially, the BlackBerry services were supposed to end on December 30.The company has been open about its privacy stance, especially after the Paris terrorist attack. Recently, CEO John Chen criticized other tech firms (mainly Apple) for their stance on privacy and asked for a balance between privacy and government access.