India Army has asked its officers and soldiers to delete Facebook, Instagram, Tinder, PUBG, Snapchat and 84 other apps from their smartphones to plug leakage of information. Indian Army's order has come after the government banned 59 Chinese apps, including widely-popular TikTok last week.
The outlawed apps also include already banned 59 Chinese apps.
The list of the apps that army officers have been asked to delete from their phone are divided into different categories like - gaming (PUBG, Mobile Legends, NONO Live); music (Songs.pk, Hungama); dating ( Tinder, OkCupid, Bumble, Hinge etc); content sharing (Shareit, Zapya and Xender); utility ( CamScanner, True Caller, Beauty Plus); messaging platforms (We Chat, Viber, Nimbuzz, helo, Hike, Share Chat, QQ, etc); e-commerce (Club Factory, Shein, Romwe, and others); blogging/microblogging (Tumblr, Reddit, Yelp etc); and antivirus app '360 Security'.
A tweet from news agency ANI includes a photograph of a page with the list of the apps, and the title, 'Social Media Apps: Banned for Usage'.
Indian Army has asked its personnel to delete 89 apps from their smartphones including Facebook, TikTok, Truecaller and Instagram to plug leakage of information: Indian Army Sources pic.twitter.com/l23Lu5ndNh- ANI (@ANI) July 8, 2020
According to a report by Time of India, army personnel have been given time till July 15 to delete the aforementioned 89 apps. The army said that soldiers who will not follow orders will face strict action. The fresh directive has been taken to ensure the security of the classified information in the national interest.
In fact, last year in November, the Indian Army's advisory board announced a ban on all popular social media messaging applications, including Facebook and WhatsApp, for officers holding crucial posts and others who were vulnerable to hacks and leakage of confidential data. That decision was made because of the Pegasus-WhatsApp spying controversy.
Additionally, the Indian Navy banned Facebook in 2019 after seven sailors were arrested for passing on "critical" information to Pakistan. The sailors were entrapped on the social networking site by agents posing as women.