BlackBerry has finally called it quits to Pakistan. The company has quoted a government notice which says that it would not allow the smartphone vendor to continue its services after December.
Earlier in July, the Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA) released a statement saying, “PTA has issued directions to local mobile phone operators to close BlackBerry Enterprise Services from Nov. 30 on security reasons.”
However, BlackBerry COO Marty Beard had a different version to say, “We do not support ‘back doors’ granting open access to our customers’ information and have never done this anywhere in the world. Pakistan’s demand was not a question of public safety; we are more than happy to assist law enforcement agencies in investigations of criminal activity. Rather, Pakistan was essentially demanding unfettered access to all of our … customers’ information.”
Meanwhile, a report by the Watchdog Privacy International, the Britain-based firm revealed that Pakistan’s military agency ISI wanted to expand its intercepting ability by gaining access to users emails and BlackBerry messages.
The report also said, “Pakistan’s intelligence agencies have abused their communications surveillance powers, including by spying on opposition politicians and Supreme Court judges. Widespread Internet monitoring and censorship has also been used to target journalists, lawyers and activists”.