Blackberry users have been blamed for helping to organise the London riots:
Blackberry’s message system BBM is famous for being a closed messaging service meaning that services such as the police can not easily intercept the data that is transferred between private group chats.
This has proven popular for business users who want to make sure sensitive information is kept as safe as possible in the airwaves, this has however meant that Blackberry devices have become popular with criminals and it now would appear rioters in London.
Blackberry have issued a statement on their twitter account stating:
“We feel for those impacted by the riots in London. We have engaged with the authorities to assist in any way we can”
Blackberry have become very popular in the UK teen market with 37 percent of UK teenagers citing the Blackberry as their smartphone of choice. This is mainly down to the free and confidential BBM message service which replaces the usual SMS text messaging service.
Blackberry’s are the smartphone of choice for “Yoof” of Britain:
Blackberry’s BBM group messaging service is perfect for covert communication, it is a totally encrypted means of sharing text like messages with people who have access to your own personal pin, this keeps communication totally closed.
Blackberry could be accused of targeting the “urban youth” element of society, their phones are a little cheaper than more sophisticated smartphones, and they have even been the recent sponsors of a ‘secret gig’ in Shoreditch Town Hall with huge names from the UK rap scene taking the stage.
Indeed Mark Duggan the young man shot dead who is now perhaps unfairly linked to the appalling riots was last known to be using a Blackberry phone texting his girlfriend that:
“The Feds are following me.”
Jonathan Akwue – one of the first people to raise the BBM connection – points out:
BBM is fast, free and private. It’s also created a ‘shadow social network‘ which is invisible to Police snooping.
Will Blackberry bow down to police and legal requests to decode BBM messages from suspect rioters?
Blackberry has a somewhat solid stance at defending its right to keep the encrypted data sent by its users to itself, I am unsure just what would be needed in order to force Blackberry to actually go against one of its selling points and allow the police access to users confidential and encrypted BBM messages.
Social networks blamed for riots:
Facebook and Twitter are being blamed for escalating the riots in London and Birmingham, this is totally pointless blame, they are merely a means of communication and people have used any form of communication at hand, riots are a part of Britain’s fabric though the recent unrest does seem to have a much more sinister undertone in the totally random nature.Anthony Munns