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Indonesia threatens to shut down BlackBerry data services

This file photo taken on November 25, 2011 shows security personnel evacuating a man after he collapsed while queueing for discounted BlackBerry smart phones at a mall in Jakarta. On December 5, 2011 Indonesian police named Research In Motion's country director a suspect for negligence after a BlackBerry promotion turned chaotic and left dozens injured and others knocked unconscious. Andrew Cobham, president director for Research in Motion (RIM) in Indonesia, and British security consultant Terry Burkey were named as two of four suspects in the incident at a Jakarta mall and could face five years' imprisonment.

DANNY/AFP/Getty Images/DANNY/AFP/Getty Images

In a new setback for the beleaguered Canadian smartphone maker Research in Motion, the Indonesian government is threatening to shut down its BlackBerry data services in the country, a newspaper reported Saturday.

The move came after the Waterloo, Ont.-based RIM reneged on its promise to set up a regional data centre in the country, the Jakarta Post said.

It said the government had been urging the company since January to establish such a centre to monitor and protect data sent by millions of Indonesian users.

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However, RIM told the government earlier this week that it would build a router in Indonesia, instead of a data hub, which would be set up in neighbouring Singapore, the report said.

An official of the Indonesian Telecommunications Regulation Body told the Post that RIM's decision would likely lead to the termination of BlackBerry Internet service and BlackBerry Messenger service in the country.

"Because RIM has not been co-operative, it is possible that we will soon end BIS and BBM services. A BlackBerry, therefore, would just be like other cellular phones," BRTI member Heru Sutadi told the newspaper Friday.

Indonesia is the largest market for RIM outside North America. With an estimated six million users, the BlackBerry is more popular in the country than smartphones from other makers.

The Indonesian warning came just days after police named RIM's outgoing country manager, Andrew Cobham, as a suspect in the chaotic launch of the BlackBerry Bold 9790 last month when dozens of consumers were injured.

It was the latest in a string of bad news to hit the company.

RIM was forced to change the name of its new BBX smartphone operating system this week after the company lost a trademark ruling in the United States.

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Last week RIM announced it will take a hit of more than half a billion dollars from discounting its PlayBook tablet and its recent massive email outage.

RIM also fired two executives at its Canadian operations after their drunken rowdiness forced the diversion of an Air Canada flight.

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