BlackBerry smart phone maker Research in Motion (RIM) has rejected Indian government's demand that the company open the source code for accessing its enterprise mail service and that the issue, which is not unique to them, has to be resolved at the wider industry level.
"There is no possibility to provide a solution to access enterprise email service as there are no keys. It is in the possession of the customer," said Robert E Crow, vice-president (industry, government and university relations) of RIM.
According to the Canadian firm, the issue is not unique to BlackBerry and that several other mobile phones use the virtual private network for messaging services.
"My perception is that this is not an issue unique to BlackBerry and the company would represent a very small fraction of virtual private network (VPN) users in India," he said.
RIM had earlier rejected the government's demand that it open its source code so that the country's intelligence agencies may lawfully intercept contents in cases where it is required.
He said BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) is essentially a virtual private network solution that cannot be given access to under any circumstances.
He said RIM itself is unable to access information encrypted through BES as neither the company nor the wireless service providers are in possession of the encryption keys.
Decoding of emails sent through BlackBerry Enterprise Server by RIM is not technically possible and the company does not want to change the security architecture for it in India or any other country, he said.
BlackBerry had, earlier this week, said it had already delivered the technology to monitor contents on its messenger service and that the government can direct service providers to connect to its new automated service.
RIM said it is installing and testing a new service, to be made available before 31 January, which will automatically render lawfully intercepted BlackBerry Messenger messages in a format readable by Indian agencies. BlackBerry has over one million subscribers in India.
RIM, which had similar problems Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and elsewhere, seem to believe that it can work its way through the Indian government with ease.