India has access to BlackBerry messenger service-govt

NEW DELHI Fri Oct 1, 2010 11:15am EDT

NEW DELHI Oct 1 (Reuters) - The Indian government has manual access to Canadian Research in Motion's RIM.TO BlackBerry messenger services and is hopeful of getting automated access from January 1, a top official said on Friday.

India, which along with several other countries has expressed concerns that BlackBerry services could be used to stir political or social instability, had threatened RIM with a ban if it were denied access to data.

"We have manual access to the messenger services. We want automated access and we are hopeful of getting that from January 1," G.K. Pillai, India's home secretary, told Reuters.

The Indian interior ministry said on Aug. 30 that the Canadian firm had offered several ways to allow authorities to monitor BlackBerry communications. The government said it would check their feasibility over the next 60 days. [ID:nSGE67T0I0]

Saudi Arabia, fretful over services such as online pornography, has reached a deal with RIM on access to the BlackBerry Messenger instant messaging service, a consumer product that operates outside of the secure corporate domain, according to government sources. [ID:nN10122755]

Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates have raised similar concerns, with the UAE setting an Oct. 11 deadline for RIM. (Reporting by Bappa Majumdar; Editing by Surojit Gupta)