BlackBerry Maker (RIMM) Agrees With Saudi Officials To Allow Access To Data

Saudi Arabia has decided against banning BlackBerry Messenger, email and Web browser services, after the smart-phone maker Research In Motion (RIMM) agreed to hand over coveted “codes” to users’ phones, the Wall Street Journal’s online edition reported Tuesday.

Citing an e-mailed statement from the country’s Communication and Information Technology Commission [CITC], the Journal said that Saudi Arabia had made the decision due to “positive developments in the completion of part of the regulatory requirements on the part of service providers.” The agency did not however, elaborate on what the requirements were, the report said.

Saudi Arabia, like neighbors United Arab Emirates [UAE], Kuwait and others including India and Indonesia, has applied pressure on RIM on social and national security grounds, forcing the BlackBerry maker — who unlike rivals Nokia (NOK) and Apple (AAPL) controls its own networks which handle encrypted messages  — to allow Saudi security authorities to monitor BlackBerry services.

Canada-based RIM, which according to BW had 46 million subscribers globally at the end of May, has about 1.2 million subscribers in Indonesia, 1.1 million in India, and a combined 1.2 million in the UAE and Saudi Arabia.

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