Blackberry to continue operations in Pakistan

ISLAMABAD: BlackBerry Ltd said it has decided to continue its operations in Pakistan as the government dropped a request for access to users’ data.

The company, which has faced similar problems in the past in India, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Indonesia, had said last month it would delay shutting down its operations in Pakistan until December 30.

State-run Pakistan Telecommunication Authority had in July demanded that the company give access to its BlackBerry Enterprise Services (BES), which encrypts data such as emails and instant messages.

BlackBerry, formerly known as Research In Motion Ltd, said on Thursday it would not provide access to its BES servers.

The PTA had earlier this year announced its intention to shut down BlackBerry Enterprise Services (BES) in the country, citing ‘security reasons’.

It was widely believed that BlackBerry’s encrypted data – secure email and messaging – was inhibiting government and intelligence agencies from collecting user information. The terse statement from PTA – directing telecos to ensure BlackBerry services are blocked by the end of November – suggested clear and unflinching orders had come from above.


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