Waterloo, Ontario – Research in Motion (RIM) (NASD:  RIMM), the maker of
BlackBerry smartphones, will allow the government of Saudi Arabia to monitor
BlackBerry users’ messages within the country in a bid to avoid an outright ban
on the devices there, the Associated Press reports. A Saudi official told AP
the deal likely means that RIM will place one of its servers locally within
Saudi Arabia.

The Saudi government said last week that local mobile network
operators would be compelled to block BlackBerry services as a national
security matter, as all data is encrypted and processed on servers located in
North America.

A ban scheduled to take effect Friday has been delayed,
according to reports, as the Saudi government examines RIM’s proposed solution.

The United Arab Emirates also recently announced plans to block BlackBerry


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(DMW previous coverage)