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UAE Retreats from BlackBerry Ban, Germany Steps Forward With Concerns

in Broadband Updates/Broadband's Impact/Cybersecurity/International/Mobile Broadband by

The Saudi government has decided to back down from its threat to shutter the BlackBerry corporate messenger service in the United Arab Emirates, saying it is making progress in talks with device maker Research in Motion, according to a statement from the Saudi Press Agency that was reported in The New York Times.

In a statement released through the state-run Saudi news agency, the Communications and Information Telecommunications Commission said it had commitments from operators and R.I.M. that would aid in the country’s plan to monitor encrypted traffic on BlackBerry smartphones.

“In light of the positive developments in completing part of the regulatory requirements from the service providers, the regulatory authority has decided to allow the continuation of the BlackBerry Messenger services,” said the statement from the Saudi Press Agency.

R.I.M. and Saudi Arabia’s three mobile network operators had faced a deadline of midnight Monday to comply with the regulator’s request.

While the UAE was concerned that the BlackBerry was too secure, the German government is now concerned it’s not secure enough.

The German government reportedly has advised ministers not to use BlackBerries and Apple iPhones because of an increase in attacks against the country’s networks.

“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,” Germany’s interior minister told the Handelsblatt newspaper.

U.K. publication The Register reports that his remarks come after Canada-based RIM was forced to shift servers to Saudi Arabia after that country expressed its concerns with the BlackBerry.

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