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Privacy experts are expressing concern and outrage after the revelation that the RCMP has had a key to unlock encrypted messages between personal BlackBerry users since at least 2016, and has used that key to decrypt about one million messages.
Cavoukian said that she wrote a letter to the company, which elicited a “rude response” telling her she was being unpatriotic, and that BlackBerry would go ahead with providing the key.
“I gave up my BlackBerry; I got an iPhone,” she said. “We have to applaud (Apple CEO) Tim Cook because he has not done what they’re doing,” she added, referring to Cook’s refusal to give the U.S. FBI the means to circumvent the security on its iPhone devices. The FBI subsequently said it found a way to hack the iPhone 5C of the San Bernardino attacker Syed Farook.
It appears as though BlackBerry's global decryption key was previously obtained by the Canadian Police. According to a report, the police have had the key to BlackBerry devices since 2010, but neither the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) nor BlackBerry will confirm the details of how it was handed over. From Vice's report:
According to technical reports by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police that were filed in court, law enforcement intercepted and decrypted roughly one million PIN-to-PIN BlackBerry messages in connection with the probe. The report doesn't disclose exactly where the key — effectively a piece of code that could break the encryption on virtually any BlackBerry message sent from one device to another — came from. But, as one police officer put it, it was a key that could unlock millions of doors.
It is also unknown whether the RCMP still has the global key sitting on their servers. While the key wouldn't gain access to enterprise devices, it does to consumer phones, which could mean that the police had been able to access phones for years.
originally posted by: JacKatMtn
If any cellphone maker wants to make money, break through, these days.. it would be one that is secure...
If that is even possible these days...