Johannesburg - The government wants new regulation giving
the police access to BlackBerry's encrypted messenger service (BBM), according
to reports on Tuesday.
BBM had become the favoured way of executing crimes, Deputy
Communications Minister Obed Bapela told the Southern Africa Telecommunication
Networks and Applications Conference in East London on Monday.
According to a report in The New Age, Bapela said BBM posed
a security risk that the government needed to "address with urgency".
"There is evidence that criminals are now using BBM to
plan and execute crime. We want to review BBM like in the UK and Saudi
Arabia," Bapela was quoted as saying.
But Business Day reported that Bapela's comments puzzled
technology experts, who said that the Regulation of Interception of
Communication Act would include the tracking of BBM being permitted if crimes
Justice spokesperson Tlali Tlali told SABC radio news on
Tuesday morning that the "interception of communication... is regarded as
a technique of last resort".
Recent riots in the UK were reportedly organised through