RIM co-CEO says governments could store encryption keys to gain access to BlackBerry e-mails

By Andrew Vanacore, AP
Monday, September 27, 2010

BlackBerry CEO suggests route to eavesdropping

NEW YORK — BlackBerry maker Research in Motion Ltd. says it has no way of providing government officials with the text of encrypted corporate e-mails its devices serve up. But if the companies that employ BlackBerry phones want to hand over the encryption keys to their e-mail, it won’t object.

In a recent interview, RIM co-CEO Jim Balsillie said he could envision countries that want access to BlackBerry e-mails setting up a kind of national registry where companies doing business within their borders would have to provide government officials with the ability to peek at encrypted messages.

“We would support that if it’s applied equitably to everyone,” Balsillie said in an interview, while warning that governments that use too heavy of a hand on the issue risk scaring away businesses.

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