What's 'appening? Saudi threatens to block popular messaging apps

Published March 25th, 2013 - 08:13 GMT
Saudi Arabia’s telecommunications regulator has threatened to block messaging applications, such as Skype, Whatsapp and Viber if telecommunication companies fail to monitor the applications. (Image: Al Arabiya)
Saudi Arabia’s telecommunications regulator has threatened to block messaging applications, such as Skype, Whatsapp and Viber if telecommunication companies fail to monitor the applications. (Image: Al Arabiya)

Saudi Arabia’s telecommunications regulator has threatened to block messaging applications, such as Skype, WhatsApp and Viber if telecommunication companies fail to monitor the applications.

The Saudi Telecommunications and Information Technology Commission urged telecom companies to examine possible ways for security oversight with the companies who own those ‘apps’.

The commission gave the telecom companies until the end of this week to respond. In case they say it is impossible to monitor the applications, the commission said it will consider procedures to block them altogether in the kingdom.

The Saudi telecommunication watchdog had addressed a similar case with BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) in 2010 when it ordered local telecommunication companies to suspend BlackBerry messenger services.

The Kingdom demanded access to the Blackberry’s encrypted network.

 

What do you think of Saudi's threat to block Skype, WhatsApp and Viber? Should the kingdom relax the strict rules placed on telecom companies? Share your comments with us below! 


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