Should the mechanism provided fall short, mobile operators will be barred from offering BES, BMS

A day after getting the August 31, 2010 deadline from the Centre to resolve security-related issues attached to BlackBerry smartphone, its maker Research In Motion (RIM) on Friday reportedly agreed to provide some technical solution to allow access to its encrypted services to Indian security agencies. But Home Ministry sources said it would deem the matter resolved only after a technical evaluation.

A three-member delegation of RIM, led by Vice-President Robert E. Crowe, met Union Home Secretary G.K. Pillai and discussed the issue.

Technical solution

Sources said RIM officials agreed to offer some technical solution by next week that would allow Indian security agencies to have access to the highly secure BlackBerry Enterprise Services (BES) and BlackBerry Messenger Services (BMS).

Decision later

However, the Home Ministry made it clear to the RIM officials that a decision on the issue would be taken only after its technical wing and security experts were satisfied with the solution provided to them. And if they fail to provide a mechanism as desired by the Home Ministry, the August 31 deadline prevailing, all mobile operators providing BlackBerry Services would be barred from offering BES and BMS.

Though RIM has already made other Blackberry services like voice, SMS and Internet services available to law enforcement agencies, the Centre also wants access to BES and BMS as it fears that it could be misused by anti-national elements.

The Canada-based company, which has over 10-lakh BlackBerry users in India, had said it would allow Indian security agencies only to do legal monitoring of subscriber data, although India had asked the smartphone vendor to provide access to e-mail and messenger data.