Thursday, June 21, 2007

France bans BlackBerrys over fears of US intelligence snooping - Independent Online Edition > Europe

The report in the UK Independent that France has banned BlackBerrys over fears of US intelligence snooping is neither surprising, nor tinfoil hat wearing on the part of the French. Unfortunately it may well be something more, the real objection of the French intelligence services may well be that the RIM settup stops them from evesdropping.

The intelligence war between France and the US has been real for some time. Both sides have openly touted intelligence operations designed to give their country a commercial advantage. In particular there has been no end of boasting over intercepts relating to deals involving arms and aircraft.

Some of this is arguably national security related. Who supplies arms to whom makes a big difference. If a country buys its weapons from the US they will be dependent on the US for purchase of spare parts. If they get them from France they will be more likely to toe the French line. Other activities are rather more questionable, particularly when they involve sales of civil aircraft.

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