Feeds

UAE unbans BlackBerrys

And why might that be, pray?

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

The United Arab Emirates has cancelled the planned ban on RIM's BlackBerry service, saying that it no longer represents a threat to national security, but not explaining why.

The ban had been scheduled to start on Monday, but the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority has now decided against implementing the ban as "Blackberry services are now compliant with the UAE’s telecommunications regulatory framework".

That means the half-million BlackBerry users in the UAE will stay connected next week, along with visiting tourists and businessmen, apparently subject to the scrutiny of local law enforcement - though we don't know how, as RIM isn't saying.

Intercepting web browsing, instant messaging and mail hosted by RIM is relatively easy, as one catches the data at the BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES). But if the customer is running their own BES then one is forced to intercept communications between the handset and the BES - impractical given the strength of encryption involved.

The rescinded ban means that RIM has either managed to convince the UAE government that terrorists are unlikely to be running their own BES, or that the company has provided some sort of back door into handsets or BES servers. The latter seems unlikely, so we'd bet money on the former.

More important, to RIM, is if it can convince India of the same thing. The Indian government gave RIM 60 days to sort out lawful intercept, which runs out at the end of October.

Not that it matters - the kerfuffle around the issue will be enough to drive the properly paranoid off the BlackBerry service, while the technically-astute terrorist will continue to use one of the plethora of alternative secure channels available to them. ®

Application security programs and practises

More from The Register

next story
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Putin: Crack Tor for me and I'll make you a MILLIONAIRE
Russian Interior Ministry offers big pile o' roubles for busting pro-privacy browser
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
UK.gov's Open Source switch WON'T get rid of Microsoft, y'know
What do you mean, we've ditched Redmond in favour of IBM?!
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.