NEW DELHI: In order to avoid the risk of data "spill" and cyber threats, border guarding force ITBP has issued a set of social media usage directives to its personnel asking them to refrain from making comments on political issues and sending a "like" to obscene and hateful material on the internet.
The paramilitary force, tasked to secure India's frontier with China apart from undertaking a variety of duties in the internal security and anti-Naxal operations domain, recently issued a dozen-point official order in this regard.
"Official photographs and documents should not be uploaded on social media websites, wikis and forums like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ among others.
"Personnel should also refrain from making comments on political related matters/issues," the latest instructions, accessed by PTI, said.
Officials said the instructions have been issued after being cleared by the top brass of the force keeping in mind the potential hazards of a "data spill" or "social engineering" threats in the age of smart phones and multi-data connectivity.
The troops have also been asked to keep away from commenting on controversial and distasteful content.
"Personnel should not blog, comment, tweet, or issue snapshots and endorse any negative or unwanted events or like or share on social media websites, including content that exploits minors, (is) obscene or hateful material," it said.
The men and women of the mountain-trained force have also been asked to neither "claim" or imply on these platforms that they are speaking on behalf of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police.
"Users should restrict the amount of personal information placed on social media websites and avoid posting information such as users home or work address, phone numbers, place of employment and other personal information that can be used to tag them," the instructions said.
They add that personnel of the force should "not use" their official email ids or passwords on these foras and desist from giving these vital personal details to "untrusted third parties, especially those promising to get followers or to make money".
Some counter-measures have also been suggested for these men in uniform to save them from becoming the victims of social media attacks like hacking or phishing.
"Users should apply available security and privacy options to their accounts and use a 'private' profile wherever applicable.
"During the use of social media websites, do not accept any friend requests from strangers and check each profile before accepting," the instructions said.
The men and women of the about 80,000 strong force have also been asked to use the latest security patches and strong anti-virus softwares.
"Be wary of accessing unknown website links or attachments, unsolicited contact and fake profiles," the instructions added.