After an espionage racket was caught and seven personnel were take into custody for handing over sensitive information to a Pakistani handler, the Indian Navy has placed an embargo on the use of Facebook by its personnel. Be that as it may, the Navy has also prohibited usage of smartphones at naval base, dockyard and warships, as specified by ANI.
“The stringent step has been taken by the force soon after seven naval personnel were caught leaking sensitive information to enemy intelligence agencies over social media,” ANI quoted an official as saying.
The espionage racket was busted on 19th December by the Andhra Pradesh Intelligence Department, which reported that the personnel, enlisted in 2017, allegedly shared imformation like locations of ships and submarines after the fell into a honey trap.
“These young men were first contacted on Facebook by three or four women and lured them into an online relationship. The women later introduced them online to a man who posed as a businessman but was actually a Pakistani handler who started eliciting information from the sailors. The sailors whose chats with the women were sexual in nature were also blackmailed later to reveal the positions and movement of our warships and submarines. The sailors were also paid money every month through a hawala operator,” an official said.
“These seven sailors would return from ships and submarines and reveal the locations and work they did from about September-October last year. They passed on a lot of sensitive information,” a source said.
An FIR has been lodged against the seven sailors at Counter-Intelligence Department at Vijayawada. Sources stated that AP Intelligence had been keeping an eye on the seven personnel for several days and their activities were being monitored.