BlackBerry ‘stood by our lawful access principles’ says John Chen

The news that BlackBerry’s global decryption key has been in the hands of the Royal Mounted Canadian Police (RCMP) since 2010 raised it’s ugly head last week, prompting BlackBerry CEO John Chen to (once again) take to the BlackBerry blogs in an effort to tell BlackBerry’s side of the story.

Neither the RCMP nor BlackBerry had confirmed that the company handed over the global encryption key. Indeed, both fought against a judge’s order to release more information about their working relationship.

Meanwhile, Crown prosecutors admitted that the federal police service had access to the key.

Once again, John Chen has taken to the BlackBerry blogs and literally said nothing new. BlackBerry feels that “tech companies as good corporate citizens should comply with reasonable lawful access requests,” a position they have made clear in the past.

Chen stated:

“This very belief was put to the test in an old case that recently resurfaced in the news, which speculated on and challenged BlackBerry’s corporate and ethical principles. In the end, the case resulted in a major criminal organization being dismantled. Regarding BlackBerry’s assistance, I can reaffirm that we stood by our lawful access principles. Furthermore, at no point was BlackBerry’s BES server involved.”

Chen continued:

“For BlackBerry, there is a balance between doing what’s right, such as helping to apprehend criminals, and preventing government abuse of invading citizen’s privacy”

The one thing we can say now is that the position with BlackBerry and the RCMP is as clear as mud.

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