Ever wary of British empire, France bans Blackberries

Is it more Anglo-paranoia or is the French government legitimately worked up over Blackberries? French officials have banned the PDAs out of fear that government emails might end into foreign hands, reports the BBC.

Is it more Anglo-paranoia or is the French government legitimately worked up over Blackberries? French officials have banned the PDAs out of fear that government emails might end into foreign hands, reports the BBC. According to Le Monde, the SGDN security service is worried because Blackberries use US- and UK-based servers.

Many government officials rely on their Blackberries, and are using them despite the ban.

"They tried to offer us something else to replace our Blackberries but it doesn't work," one unnamed official told the paper.

Canadian manufacturer Research In Motion (RIM) responded to the ban by saying that Blackberry offers "the most secure wireless data solution available." The devices have been approved for transmission of sensitive data by the UK government and by NATO.

"RIM continues to be committed to working with and supporting the needs of both corporate and government customers within France, including protecting data from attack and unauthorized access," the company said.

National Assembly member Jacques Myard, a member of France's governing UMP party, warned French politicians to be aware that Blackberries were not secure.

"It's very good to say 'be careful', because we don't live in an ordinary world in which you can talk on your mobile or private line without any warning, without caution," he told the BBC's World Today program.