Blackberry says its handsets are 'as secure as ever'

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image captionThe Netherlands Forensic Institute (NFI) said it had cracked modified phones known as PGP Blackberries

Blackberry has said its handsets are "as secure as ever", following reports Dutch police had been able to read encrypted messages on its phones.

Earlier this month, Dutch police told the BBC they had decrypted messages on Blackberrys modified by third parties.

Blackberry has now said the message recovery, if there was any, could be down to third-party applications or the insecure practices of users.

It prides itself on providing one of the most secure means of communication.

World leaders, including US President Barack Obama, have been pictured using the company's devices.

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image captionGerman Chancellor Angela Merkel is often snapped using her Blackberry

Some third parties sell modified handsets known as PGP Blackberrys, which promise to add an additional layer of encryption to communications.

It is those PGP Blackberrys the Netherlands Forensic Institute (NFI) said it had been able to crack.

"If such an information recovery did happen, access to this information from a Blackberry device could be due to factors unrelated to how the Blackberry device was designed," the company said in a blog post.

"There are no backdoors in any Blackberry devices.

"And Blackberry does not store and therefore cannot share Blackberry device passwords with law enforcement or anyone else.

"Provided that users follow recommended practices, Blackberry devices remain as secure and private as they have always been."

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