RIM Reportedly Bows To Pressure From Saudi Arabia, Hands Over Blackberry Access

Even when you’re one of the largest mobile companies in the world (and certainly the largest for the business elite), things change when you find yourself at odds with a sovereign nation. Or a few. That’s the situation RIM is in right now as they attempt to reconcile their longtime promise to users (uncompromising encryption and security) with the unforgiving world of global politics. As you’re likely aware if you’re reading this post, RIM has been the center of government ire in a few countries (most prominently the UAE, India, Saudi Arabia, and Indonesia), which have threatened to ban Blackberry devices if RIM doesn’t provide them reasonable access to users’ data.

RIM’s response was a stolid “relax,” but the public response appears to be different from the internal one, if reports from inside the company are true. What the Saudi Government has praised as “positive developments” are reportedly concessions by RIM giving that government unprecedented access to certain RIM resources, giving it the power to eavesdrop on any Saudi Blackberry user.

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