What is that they say about throwing out the baby with the bathwater? Concerns around security concerns have become a cause for concern for mobile operators and Blackberry users in India: the Department of Telecom has written to mobile operators providing Blackberry services in India, asking about whether there is a way to monitor BlackBerry usage, when there is a need for “lawful interception”. CNBC-TV18 reports (via Tech2), security agencies feel that they cannot decrypt encrypted Blackberry messages and the servers are not located in India. Airtel, Reliance, Voda and BPL are among the operators who offer Blackberry services in India, and issue came to light when Tata Teleservices’ proposal to offer Blackberry services was rejected. It appears that other operators did not seek the DoT’s approval before launching the services…this also indicates that there is no continuous monitoring of services, since Blackberry services have been launched with much fanfare and media coverage. Sources tell CNBC-TV18 that existing service providers will meet the Telecom Secretary this week, and they have 4-6 weeks to respond. In the meantime, the services are not being stopped.
In the meantime, Research In Motion has assured DoT that the security issues will be sorted out. Business Standard reports that RIM (NSDQ: RIMM) has said it will work with the Dot, the Canadian embassy and the security agencies of both countries. Blackberry has around 400,000 corporate customers in India. COAI, on the other hand, is using the big-brother argument, and talking about a police state.