Pakistan Targets Defence Officials With APK Files
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Pakistan Targets Defence Officials With APK Files

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Sends such file formats with misleading labels; it corrupts system and exposes data once opened; stolen information later used to blackmails officials

Mumbai: The central government’s intelligence apparatus has found that Pakistan Intelligence Operatives (PIOs) are engaged in stealing data of armed forces personnel and subsequently blackmailing them. At the centre of such nefarious activities is the android application package also known as .apk, a file format which works on android platforms.

The findings indicate that the PIOs are involved in a highly-advanced form of hacking to extract data from their targets, specifically defence service personnel. The report revealed a well-organized effort on part of the PIOs to compromise the security of Indian army officials through .apk operations. They send such a file type via WhatsApp and Telegram, which is masked with a name related to an Indian army operation, budget or sanctioned funds. When targeted officials attempt to open the file, their system gets corrupted and exposes the data without their knowledge.

PIOs Targeting Specific Areas

The report further said that the PIOs are concentrating their activities in the Bharatpur, Mewat, and Mathura triangle and employing methods such as online fraud to further their blackmail and hacking designs. A reliable source in one of the agencies said that in recent months, several officers and soldiers of paramilitary forces in aforementioned areas have received .apk files. These documents are masqueraded as government notifications, defence-related information, and Ponzi schemes. They lured recipients with promises of daily commissions without any effort while some were even enticed with discounts by buying products through .apk links.

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, a top official source revealed that the investigation found that the PIOs initiated the blackmailing of defence personnel through the acquisition of personal data with .apk file bombardment. They threatened these individuals, saying that they would reveal their personal information and operation-related details on social media, portraying them as traitors. Subsequently, the PIOs engaged them for their operations.

Labourers, Workers & Vendors Working In Defence Services Too On Target

Besides officials, they are also targeting labourers, workers and vendors working in defence services. This can be corroborated with the specific incident in Jamnagar involving two mess boys in contact with the PIOs. The central government’s intelligence apparatus has asked the law enforcement agencies to approach the military intelligence desk first if they identify any suspects. The move will ensure that the suspected person gets less time to erase evidence.

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