U.S. President-elect Barach Obama will have to give up his beloved BlackBerry smart phone after his inauguration next Tuesday. The intelligence powers-that-be who are charged to protect him (and his country) say the device is just not secure enough for a President to use.


Officials at Research In Motion (RIM), makers of the BlackBerry, insist that the devices and that the systems it maintains to communicate with them are secure. But third party security experts agree with Obama’s protectors, cautioning that no communication device or system can ever be entirely safe from hackers or spies. Witness, for example, the e-mail hacks suffered by some major players in last fall’s U.S. Presidential election. And, the bigger the tareget, the harder the bad guys will try to hack it.

There are wireless devices which are certified as secure by U.S. military and government authorities. But whether Obama will be allowed to pocket one of those remains to be seen.

The San Francisco Chronicle this week polled its readers asking, “Should President-elect Barack Obama have to give up his BlackBerry?” Early results revealed that 50 per cent of respondents said he should be allowed to keep it while 18 per cent opined as the President will be too busy with other things to frequently check e-mail. Only nine per cent he should definitely give up his Blackberry.

But Obama — as a President should — gets the last word:

“I’m still clinging to my BlackBerry,” he recently told CNBC. “They’re going to [have to] pry it out of my hands.”

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