Internal Security

Terror groups in Pakistan switch to new messaging applications

By ET News

Amid a raging debate over privacy offered by messaging platforms like WhatsApp, terrorist groups and their handlers from Pakistan are switching to new applications which include one developed by a Turkish company, officials here said.

The three new applications came to light after evidence was collected following encounters with terrorists or those who surrendered before the Army gave details about their mode of radicalisation by Pakistan-based terrorist groups, they said.

The names of the messaging apps have been withheld for security reasons.

While one of the applications is owned by a company based in the United States, the second is from Europe. The latest is an application developed by a Turkish company that has been frequently used by terrorist group handlers and their prospective recruits in the Kashmir valley.

The new applications have the ability to work with the slowest internet connections where Enhanced Data for Global Evolution (EDGE), used in the late 2000s, or 2G is in operation.

The government had suspended internet across Jammu and Kashmir after the abrogation of the special status of the erstwhile state in August 2019. Early last year, 2G internet services were restored.

Terror groups had virtually stopped using WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. Later, it was found that they have switched over to new applications available free of cost on the world wide web, a security official said.

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