The directives have been issued by the PTI-led federal government of Pakistan to all provincial governments to impose a ban on the use of social networking applications in the offices.
As per the details, the directives were issued over the concerned about the leakages of the confidential letters and cyber-attacks by the foreign agencies.
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The provincial government of Sindh is said to have also taken the measures in this regard and is considering imposing a ban on the use of WhatsApp and other social networking apps by the government employees.
In this regard, a letter has been issued by the National Telecom and Information Technology Security Board, Cabinet Division, Government of Pakistan, titled Ban on use of WhatsApp and likewise means for sharing of official letter and Information.
“It has been reported that hostile intelligence agencies have developed technical capabilities and means to gain access to sensitive information stored in mobile phones of officials of government departments, institutions, and ministers in the country,” the letter reads.
“These spyware companies are using hacking software and applications such as “Chat Line” and “Pegasus” malware on WhatsApp account of target mobile phones (IOS and Android) to gain access to sensitive information stored on mobile phones. The malware is capable to infect any mobile phone (IOS and Android) only by generating missed call on target WhatsApp number,” it warns.
The letter further says that no official and classified information be shared through the messaging application WhatsApp or similar app being highly insecure. WhatsApp must be upgraded to the latest version of the iOS and Android, the letter reads.
“All mobile phones purchased prior to May 10, 2019 be immediately replaced,” it directed.