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Are Blackberries more immune from government surveillance?

By August 4, 2010Uncategorized

One often hears people say Blackberry mobile devices are more secure than other devices, supposedly because of the Blackberry messaging feature. The purported reason for the extra security is that RIM, the company that makes Blackberries, manages the traffic sent across Blackberry devices itself (as opposed to letting wireless carriers such as AT&T do it).

Yes, it's true that RIM itself manages Blackberry messaging traffic on servers located in Canada. And it's also true that messages sent through its network are encrypted. However, as this article points out, that doesn't mean that governments around the world can't monitor Blackberry conversations. 

Recently Saudi Arabia banned Blackberries on the grounds of national security. What 'national security' problem do they think that Blackberries have? Well, apparently RIM won't give the Saudi government the same ability to monitor traffic that other governments get.  And that's why Saudi Arabia is going to ban the devices.

So, next time you hear someone say that Blackberries are inherently immune from government snooping, you'll know that's not exactly true.

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