BB: ‘Black’ is ‘Berry’ much back!

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August 31st, 2010 Ushamrita Choudhury

After, apparently, some assurances from the Canadian government, and after much deliberation by Research In Motion (RIM), the Indian government has agreed to let the BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) operate in the country. RIM’s BB, one of the world’s most popular smart-phones, has approximately one million users in India. Given the present status of the country’s economic prowess, and the adoption of advanced technology in the business sphere, RIM certainly has a firm future in India.

The Indian government, concerned over the domestic security situation, insisted that the Canadian company yield its ‘secret formula’, namely, the BES, in an un-encrypted and readable format to security agencies. The uptight stance taken by the government on BB’s highly-secure enterprise services emanates from confirmed threats to India’s security situation, and as of today, RIM has been given a two-month reprieve for providing a permanent solution to BES’s services, sans the security threats ‘embedded’ in the smart-phone’s enterprise solutions structure.

When customers purchased BBs, they mustn’t have even imagined the potential these sleek devices have to wreak to havoc and destruction. These smart-phones were used in nearly every stage of the 2008 terrorist attack that left part of Mumbai crippled.

Really, I would never have anticipated that something as innocuous as a BB could be used for such sinister motives. Yet, when the government sought a total ban on BB’s enterprise services, it wasn’t quite justified. For all the ‘security issues’ the BB poses, it is a complete device which facilitates seamless communication, between individuals and businesses alike. Business transactions are expedited faster, even when these transactions are carried out while in transit.

RIM defended the BB enterprise services saying it actually added value to a firm’s operations, and enabled greater productivity at the workplace. Several businesses, small, medium and big, rely on services such as the BES to fulfil their official communication needs.

Corporate data that is exchanged over the BES is so secure, that even the manufacturers of the smart-phone cannot access an individual’s mails and data through any ‘master’ code. Even so, why should a productivity-enhancing product be rendered almost useless because of some incident in the past?

Agreed, today’s anti-social elements are tech-savvy, and they are succulently funded to afford the best technologies to address their irrational needs. In this sense, isn’t it obvious that if these elements don’t have access to the BB services, they’ll scout for some other such service?

Hopefully, two months hence, the RIM-Government stand-off will culminate in a logical manner. Sacrificing business productivity and efficiency for the sake of the nation’s security would be acceptable had there not been any other way of accessing the crucial data which is transferred over the BES. Finally, RIM has consented to establish a server in India which will allow the government to monitor and intercept data exchanged through BB’s super-secure network.

As for the yuppy BB customers, they can be relieved that the ‘Instant Messaging’ (IM) service will remain ‘secure’ for the next two months, at least. A highly-regarded form of tech-nosh, the IM service provides free messaging facilities to several youngsters looking for constant connectivity through cheap, in this case, free, and exciting features.

Being a BB user myself, I am becalmed that there has been a co-operative attitude in handling a situation which would have otherwise turned into a lose-lose situation for both parties. While RIM would have lost out in an expanding market, and Indians would have lost out on enjoying a substantial technological feat, the government would have earned the flak of several ‘socially-healthy’ people who use the smart-phone for furthering their own lives, and subsequently, for furthering the growth of the economy.

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4 Responses to “BB: ‘Black’ is ‘Berry’ much back!”

  1. Anne Perre Says:

    Well written blog. However, the truth value and practicality of the following is debatable:

    “Corporate data that is exchanged over the BES is so secure, that even the manufacturers of the smart-phone cannot access an individual’s mails and data through any ‘master’ code. Even so, why should a productivity-enhancing product be rendered almost useless because of some incident in the past?”

  2. Ujjval Jauhari Says:

    Good One Usha!

  3. sagar Says:

    interesting…u write well..crisp

  4. Riddhima Says:

    Hmmm……I didn’t know that BlackBerry could be such a berry, berry big security threat….but now that I do, I still want a BlackBerry. Does that make me a security threat too?
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    Just kidding. Informative blog, though; keep it up, girl!

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