BlackBerry puts monitoring centre in India: report

Chief Regulatory Officer at CSE Renuke Wijayawardhane presenting the listing certificate to Executive Chairperson at Renuka Hotels Shibani Thambiayah

MUMBAI, October 28, 2011 (AFP) – Research In Motion (RIM) has set up a facility in Mumbai to help the Indian government conduct surveillance checks on the company’s BlackBerry services, the Wall Street Journal said on Friday. The financial daily quoted unnamed people familiar with the matter who said the Canadian firm opened the centre earlier this year to deal with requests from Indian intelligence agencies.

No one was immediately available for comment at either RIM or India’s telecoms ministry when contacted by AFP.

RIM and the Indian government have been embroiled in a row over access to BlackBerry services, in particular encrypted email and instant message facilities that New Delhi fears could be used by extremists to plot attacks.

Multiple deadlines have been issued to the firm to comply with government requests for monitoring.

The Wall Street Journal said RIM was now allowing surveillance of BlackBerry Internet services and the company was no longer facing the prospect of shutdowns.

RIM was complying with intercept requests on suspect individuals once it was satisfied the demand had legal authorisation, it added.

In January, Home Minister P. Chidambaram said RIM had already given