THE WEBSITE OF the BlackBerry smartphone company has been hacked this afternoon by a hacktivist group who oppose the company’s plans to share records of messages with police.
Research In Motion had offered to share BlackBerry Messenger data with police trying to trace the spread of the riots.
BlackBerry Messenger is a secure form of communications which allows messages to be broadcast across the BlackBerry network without being visible to others. The service had been credited with spreading otherwise confidential instructions for potential rioters.
The Guardian reports that the company’s ‘Inside BlackBerry’ blog was this afternoon defaced by a group – naming themselves TeamPoison – which said it opposed giving police details of the BlackBerry users’ activities.
The website read:
If you do assist the police by giving them chat logs, GPS locations, customer information and access to people’s BlackBerry Messengers you will regret it.
We have access to your database which includes your employees information, e.g. addresses, names, phone numbers etc. Now if you assist the police, we WILL make this information public and pass it onto rioters… do you really want a bunch of angry youths on your employees doorsteps?
The statement added that the group did not condone the riots, or the looting of small businesses, but that it supported rioters who were directly attacking the police and the government.
The blog had been taken offline at the time of publication.
STV reports, meanwhile, that a 16-year-old Glasgow boy has been arrested in connection with comments posted to Facebook, inciting people to take part in riots in that city.
The boy was arrested at 12:40pm this afternoon after setting up a ‘Let’s Start a Riot in Glasgow’ page. It is alleged that he incited others to commit acts of disorder.