More Nations Threaten Smartphone Bans Over Security

AP

Germany's Interior Minister wants the nation's politicians to stop using smartphones or other mobile devices, according to published reports.

Thomas de Maiziere made a similar call last November but now he's elevating the demand, citing national security concerns about BlackBerry data getting routed through servers outside of Germany. His statement was first carried by the German daily, Handelsblatt, and has been partly translated in The Register, which quoted him saying:

"The BlackBerry infrastructure is a closed proprietary system. [But] the access standard to our networks must be determined by the government and not by a private company." In the last couple of months, smartphone makers - Research In Motion, in particular, have come under pressure from nations seeking to gain more oversight of the encrypted bits zipping through their networks.

  • Saudi Arabia said it will allow BlackBerry service to continue in the country for the time being, citing "positive developments." Still unclear is whether the reprieve is permanent. RIM which makes the BlackBerry, isn't commenting but a Saudi newspaper has reported that a plan under discussion would involve the placement of a BlackBerry server in Saudi Arabia.
  • Lebanon is reviewing whether BlackBerry service raises security concerns.
  • The United Arab Emirates intends to close down e-mail, messaging and Web browsing on BlackBerrys starting next month The desert kingdom continues to negotiate with RIM.
  • Indonesia also wants RIM to put a server in its country and says it is considering banning the service. So far, thought, the country's not setting a public deadline.
  • India is negotiating with RIM, also looking for more control over the data.
Also See:

Germany Cites iPhone Security Problem

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