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BlackBerry to Quit Pakistan Over Privacy Issues

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Nov 30, 2015, 8:39 AM   by Eric M. Zeman

BlackBerry today said it plans to leave Pakistan by Dec. 30 due to disagreements with the Pakistani government over privacy. BlackBerry says Pakistan wants to monitor all BlackBerry Enterprise Service traffic in the country, including emails and BBM messages. "BlackBerry will not comply with that sort of directive," said COO Marty Beard. "As we have said many times, we do not support 'back doors' granting open access to our customers' information, and have never done this anywhere in the world." BlackBerry said it has no issue assisting law enforcement agencies with investigations, but it cannot sanction wide-scale spying on its customers. "The privacy of our customers is paramount to BlackBerry, and we will not compromise that principle," said Beard. Customers should be able to use their BES-backed devices without issue through Dec. 30. The company regrets leaving Pakistan, but said protecting its customers is more important.

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