Army asks its officials to stay off any social media groups floated by civilians

The Army has instructed all officers to stay off any social media groups floated by civilians, or people whose identity cannot be verified.

Published: 09th July 2019 03:40 AM  |   Last Updated: 09th July 2019 10:41 AM   |  A+A-

Indian Army

For representational purposes (File Photo | PTI)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: The Army has instructed all officers to stay off any social media groups floated by civilians, or people whose identity cannot be verified.

The instruction issued by the Directorate General of Military Operations relating to social media and messaging apps like WhatsApp said, “No Army personnel is permitted to be part of any large group(s) on internet-based messenger, chat, email services. Only one-to-one messages are permitted. However, within a close-knit group wherein members or subscribers are ‘only serving personnel’ known to each other and whose credentials can be ascertained, it is allowed.”

A senior officer said the order comes in the wake of data leaks. “This is being done to secure not just information but personnel of the force.”

Specifying the methodology and pointing at Pakistan for the leaks, he said, “There can be instances where an unknown person sitting dormant in the group could be relaying the information to undesirable elements or even a malware is introduced to siphon off the entire data. This mined data can cost us severely.”

The instruction is in addition to the Army’s existing social media policy. The officer added that the instruction also advises Army officers to “preferably be part of only serving officers groups” which excludes all others, including veterans. The instruction has been relayed to all formations with an order to disseminate it further.

Aircraft Carrier trial

The work on Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC)-1 is moving at a brisk pace and it is expected to begin its basin trials in the early months of 2020 told a senior Indian Navy official said Monday.

Vice Admiral A K Saxena, Controller, Warship Production and Acquisition, said, the gas turbines are expected to start in the third quarter of this year.

Basin trial is the testing of ship machinery and equipment in floating conditions before the sea trials. The IAC-1 is named INS Vikrant

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