- The NSA And Prism, Where Does BlackBerry Stand?
  • The NSA And PRISM, Where Does BlackBerry Stand?

    There has been a ton of news over the last day or so about the NSA being all creepy and wiretapping pretty much every American (and non-American, for that matter) living in the U.S. over the past seven years. According to reports, the NSA has accomplished this through a program called PRISM which allegedly lets them tap in to the servers of major Internet companies whenever they want.

    Some of those popular organizations are said to include the likes of Google, Apple, Microsoft, Facebook, Yahoo, Skype, among others. One of the major companies excluded from this list, however, is none other than BlackBerry.

    Our favorite smartphone maker has a pretty strict policy when it comes to sharing any of your personal data in most areas of the world, it just doesn't. In fact, BlackBerry's regular customer (non-BES) encryption is so good, it's been called too secure for certain countries in the world, like India and the UAE.

    Also, as a Canadian company, U.S. government agencies have no jurisdiction over BlackBerry, and unless BlackBerry hands over the encryption keys willingly (which hasn't and will most likely never happen), our data will stay secure.

    Obviously, this security only extends as far as what BlackBerry can control. For example, if you have Gmail on your device, and the NSA has extracted data from Google, your emails are at risk. That's something that BlackBerry itself has no control over. Same can be said for Facebook, YouTube and other services which extend beyond your smartphone's control.

    So which aspects can BlackBerry protect exclusively from end to end? Well, one of those would be BBM. As the most secure communications tool in modern day, BlackBerry Messenger's data and messages are fully encrypted, and not accessible to the government (unless you live in one of those countries listed above). This fact is something that can definitely give BlackBerry a much needed push into the limelight once again.

    As messed up as it may sound, having a scandal of this magnitude blow up right before BlackBerry Messenger launches on iOS and Android in the coming weeks is one of the best things BlackBerry could've hoped for.

    Aside from Facebook, Google, and Apple, other companies have had their fair share of privacy issues. WhatsApp, one of most popular messaging clients, has had its privacy practices scrutinized for some shady business in the past. BlackBerry can, and should, leverage this lack of security from others into the public mainstream and have that be one of strongest pushes for BBM globally across any device.

    We're not even going to get into BES in this post either. For a company to not be using BES 10 after all of this PRISM stuff comes out, would be moronic. BES is simply unrivaled by anyone in security, and that's something we can all agree on.

    BlackBerry is a synonym of security, plain and simple. This ugly news that has come out recently may just be the shake up the world needed to see that simple fact.

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