The Indian army chief has asked the forces to not befriend women with names of filmstars on social media as these could be honey traps.
“What makes you think they want to be friends with you? They would not want to be friends with any Tom, Dick and Harry,” Bipin Rawat was quoted as saying by India Today.
Gen Bipin Rawat said that the social media cannot be banned in the military but it is to be used in a constructive manner. “It should not compromise on our security as it can be used by our adversary to trap us.”
In 2017, a group captain in the Indian Air Force (IAF) was lured by two women on social media. It was a trap set up by Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI). The officer was arrested for leaking sensitive information to the two women.
Quoting sources India reported that the frequency of attempts to honey trap officials in the security establishment has been increasing.
The new modus operandi for trapping officials is to send them pictures of women on WhatsApp. The photographs, however, did not open. The officials are then told that the pictures are only accessible from a desktop. When an official uses a desktop to see the pictures, “they hack your system and access data through malware”, an official explained the modus operandi.
The Army is preparing a robust information warfare strategy to tackle these threats including social media propaganda, fake news that is often aimed at demoralising the forces.
A new dedicated information warfare wing could soon be set up to deal with it. This is likely to include social media warriors’ who could be civilians like in the United States of America (USA) to combat these threats.