Army issues alert warning to soldiers against malicious Pakistani app similar Aarogya Setu
The Indian Army has issued an alert to its personnel warning them against the possibility of their phones being hacked by Pakistani agencies using a malware carrying an app similar to India’s Aarogya Setu, two army officers said on Thursday on condition of anonymity.
There have been reports of the malicious app being sent by Pakistani operatives to WhatsApp groups of army personnel and an advisory has been issued to all soldiers to download the contact-tracing Aarogya Setu app only from the government website, the Google Play store or Apple’s App Store, said one of the officials cited above.
The existing cybersecurity policies on the usage of mobile phones have also been reiterated, said the second official.
The government has been urging citizens to use the Aarogya Setu to prevent the spread of Covid-19 and earlier this week, in a meeting with chief ministers, Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke about “popularising the app and asked them to ensure downloads in greater numbers.”
Apart from reaching out and informing users about their potential risk of infection, this “privacy-first by design” app also shares safe behaviours and updated medical advisories about Covid-19 containment in 11 languages.
Defence minister Rajnath Singh last week asked India’s top military commanders to ensure that the country’s adversary is not allowed to exploit the Covid-19 situation at a time when the Pakistan army continues to violate the ceasefire on the Line of Control to help terrorists sneak into Jammu and Kashmir.
The neighbouring army has violated the ceasefire around 1,400 times this year. The total number of ceasefire violations by it stood at 3,168 in 2019 and 1,629 in 2018.