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BLOG: RIM Targets Thieves, Paparazzi and Stalkers with New Camera-Security Tech

Al Sacco | Jan. 3, 2013
The USPTO this week granted BlackBerry-maker RIM a patent for a new technology that could make it harder for corporate thieves, paparazzi, stalkers and other creeps to take inconspicuous pictures of sensitive information, objects and people.

So IT will be able to adjust the image-stabilization security timer to increase the amount of time corporate users need to stay still before capturing images. But the patent makes it sound like non-enterprise users won't be able to decrease the timer to less than five seconds. That's great for corporations, celebrities and people being stalked, but sometimes normal, non-threatening people want to take quick action shots, and this could potentially be a turnoff for people who don't want or who don't require this kind of smartphone-camera security feature. Also, paparazzi and stalkers who learn about the new camera feature could just, you know, buy an iPhone or an Android and snap away without delay, which would only force more potential BlackBerry users away from RIM-even if they're sketch balls.

For years, RIM has released camera-less versions of its most popular devices for use in secure enterprise environments. And recent versions of its BlackBerry Enterprise Server also support IT policies that let administrators disable camera functionality on BlackBerrys with digital shooters. This new patent could take RIM's camera-security efforts one step further. I'm just not sure it's a step in the right direction, at least for non-corporate BlackBerry users.

Al Sacco covers Mobile and Wireless for CIO.com

 

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