The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has directed all telecom service providers to ensure that proper infrastructure for legal interception of BlackBerry services is in place by December 31, 2012, reports PTI (via Business Standard).
Citing a note from DoT, the report states that the government has had various discussions regarding the BlackBerry interception solution provided by Research In Motion (RIM), however telcos have not yet implemented the solution on their networks. It’s worth noting that we weren’t able to locate any related note on the DoT website at the time of writing this article.
Mentioning the note, the report also adds that DoT had previously instructed RIM to provide details like PIN resolution and web-browsing requirements with respect to its Blackberry Internet Service (BIS) to telcos and their lawful interception vendors, for which the company had planned to place a server in Mumbai.
At the same time, DoT had apparently instructed telcos to develop a system which can be plugged in to RIM server, to deploy the BlackBerry interception solution developed by the company. DoT had later noted that it had received responses from all telcos apart from MTNL, as indicated by the report.
No Extension in Deadline: According to a similar ET report, telcos had previously asked DoT to extend the deadline for compliance to February 2013, which has been rejected by the department.
Interestingly, the reports also notes that DoT was not satisfied with the results from the trial conducted on Vodafone networks on July 19 and it plans to ask the company to demonstrate the solution through a fresh set of trials on Vodafone networks. In response, RIM had attributed majority of the glitches to Vodafone networks and Vodafone’s interception vendor.
Previous Developments: In August 2012, reports had suggested that RIM has demonstrated an interception solution developed by a firm called Verint, which could intercept messages and emails exchanged between BlackBerry handsets. RIM had however dismissed these reports, stating that it had not provided access or encryption keys for its secure enterprise services to the Indian government.
The company noted that it had instead offered a lawful access solution to the government which will help all telecom service providers in India to comply with the laws, but the solution doesn’t include secure BlackBerry enterprise communications.
RIM had also set up a server in Mumbai, India in February 2012, to provide security agencies access to its BlackBerry Messenger services, after a long-drawn battle with the Indian authorities. Before this, The Ministry of Communications had mentioned in December 2011, that the Indian security agencies were able to access BlackBerry services through the interception and monitoring facilities provided by the telecom service provider.
– BlackBerry’s India Issues Resolved? Whither Transparency?
– Indian Govt Asks ISPs & Telcos To Install Interception Equipment; Testing BlackBerry Interception
– RIM Sets Up Server In India Paving The Way For BBM,BES Interception