RIM faces threat again to its service

Indonesia’s telecommunications regulator, Badan Regulasi Telekomunikasi Indonesia (BRTI), has renewed its demand that Research In Motion locate a server in the country to route communications traffic, after the Canadian company reportedly set up similar infrastructure in Singapore.

The BRTI plans to make the setting up of a local server a precondition for RIM to continue to offer its BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS) and BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) in Indonesia, said BRTI commissioner Heru Sutadi in an email interview on Monday.

Indonesia is a big market for RIM, as the BlackBerry device is very popular with locals. Several people were injured in a stampede at a recent promotional event organized by RIM in Indonesia.

BRTI wants a server located in Indonesia to handle local traffic as right now it cannot ensure the safety of consumers’ data as it is routed all the way to servers in Canada, Sutadi said.

Customers also have to pay more for service because of the long haul from Jakarta to Canada, Sutadi said. By locating a server in Indonesia, RIM will also be able to provide good quality service to users in Indonesia, he added.

In line with local regulations for Internet and network service providers, RIM has to provide the local server as a license condition to operate its BIS and BBM services, and may face termination of services if it doesn’t, Sutadi added.

RIM said in a statement on Saturday that it has been working closely with government bodies in Indonesia, and had written to the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MOCI) in September to say that it had “fully addressed” all requests made by the ministry in January.

These included setting up a network of over 50 BlackBerry Expert Centers throughout Indonesia, working with law enforcement agencies in Indonesia for the provision of lawful access as stipulated by national law, establishing a content filtering system in accordance with the requirements outlined by the government, and the setting up a “regional network aggregator” to which many Indonesian carriers are now connected, addressing MOCI concern about the speed of data flows.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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