DoT against ban on encrypted messages

New Delhi: In some relief to BlackBerry, the telecom ministry is understood to have said that a complete ban on encrypted communications is not desirable as long as solutions exist to have the data intercepted in a readable format.

"Banning of encrypted communication is not desirable as long as some solutions exist to get the (data) intercepted in readable format. Therefore, accent should be on regulation of these services in such a manner that security assistance needs and communication security needs are balanced," an expert committee set up by the Department of Telecom (DoT) said in its report.

Recently, Canada-based Research In Motion (RIM) came up with a solution for realtime interception of its BlackBerry Enterprise Service ( BES) after seeking several extensions of deadlines for nearly a year.

The government had earlier set August 15 as the deadline for RIM, the maker of BlackBerry, to provide the country`s security agencies with interception keys to enable real-time tracking of its popular messenger and corporate e-mail services in readable format.

Besides RIM, Nokia is another player that provides a push mail facility to its subscribers . The solution provided by RIM is being tested by the DoT, which is expected to give its report by the month-end . Earlier, MHA had also stated that if no solution is found for any encrypted service, those services should be banned or blocked.