BlackBerry’s reputation came under fire when there were reports a few days ago claiming that the Netherlands Forensic Institute or NFI had decrypted emails from a BlackBerry device. The Canadian firm has now responded to this news, saying its devices are still as secure as they used to be.
BlackBerry devices secure as ever
In a blog post on Thursday, BlackBerry clarified that it does not have any information on the device used, its configuration or other factors related to the claim. The Canadian firm said there is probably no connection between the ability of the NFI to crack the encryption and the way the handset has been designed.
BlackBerry further said its devices have no back doors, and its phones do not save device passwords. Therefore, the company does not share the passwords of its users with law enforcement agencies or anyone else. The manufacturer said it could have probably happened either because of an unsecure third-party app or the “deficient security behavior of the user.”
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Speculations are being made that some software from Cellebrite was used to decrypt the email or that there are chances that the memory chip was removed from the device and the data dumped subsequently. The NFI works with law enforcement.
Motherboard, which was first to report the story, cited Crime Newsin saying that the agency decrypted a BlackBerry device. The device made use of PGP-encryption, and the agency got it from a vendor which sells so-called PGP-enhanced BlackBerry handsets. Such phones come with custom-built, security-focused software and encrypted email.
Priv available at more retailers in the U.K.
In other BlackBerry news, the company has decided to make its first Android device, the Priv, available at more retailers in the U.K. This slider device with a QWERTY keyboard can now be purchased from online retailer Unlocked Mobiles at a price of £545 (including taxes).
Previously, the device was available on the company’s official U.K. ShopBlackBerry store and could also be bought through Carphone Warehouse, but the exclusivity has ended now. By going through the retailer’s website, it can be noticed that the device is available at a discounted price of £530, which is £30 lower than its previous price.