Newspaper article The Canadian Press

BlackBerry CEO: Its a 'Social Responsibility' to Vault Privacy in Some Cases

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

BlackBerry CEO: Its a 'Social Responsibility' to Vault Privacy in Some Cases

Article excerpt

BlackBerry CEO stands by controversial privacy blog

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WATERLOO, Ont. - BlackBerry's chief executive John Chen says he stands by a controversial blog post he published earlier this week that outlines when he'd be willing to hand private customer information over to law enforcement.

The CEO of the Waterloo, Ont.-based company was taken to task by technology websites and commentators over what some deemed as hypocrisy coming from the leader of a brand that pledges security and privacy.

Without pointing Apple out by name on Tuesday, Chen slammed a recent update to Apple's operating system which makes it impossible for the company to unlock the devices, even if there's a search warrant for a criminal investigation.

Talking with reporters on Friday, after BlackBerry released its latest financial results, Chen said he wasn't fazed by the backlash.

"I strongly believe that if there are bad elements out there trying to harm society, for one reason or another... it's our social responsibility to help," he said.

He also offered some more insight into his post -- highlighting a "longstanding policy" established at BlackBerry before his arrival two years ago, which outlines when the company would be willing to give access to police under a court order.

"We are going to be able to provide your location, who's called who, and all of the metadata around that," he said in a roundtable with reporters. …

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