18:12 GMT16 January 2021
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    Officers of the Indian armed forces are allowed to have social media accounts but are barred from posting pictures in uniform, revealing their place of posting or any official material, including information on visits or plans regarding operations.

    New Delhi (Sputnik): Months of surveillance on an Indian soldier has revealed that he was actually honey-trapped by a woman allegedly from Pakistan, according to a report in the Times of India.

    The soldier, posted in an infantry battalion at the Mhow cantonment in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, was arrested on Wednesday night for passing crucial information including troops' movement to a Pakistani spy on Facebook and WhatsApp, according to the report.

    An initial investigation suggests that the 26-year-old may have been paid for spying on his fellow soldiers. Defence sources said he was arrested after six months of surveillance by military intelligence and the intelligence bureau.

    "[A] Cellphone that was being used to chat with the woman has been seized. Cyber laboratory will now recover the deleted information," media report cited a defence source as saying.

    Previously posted in the northeastern state of Assam, he was transferred to Mhow in April 2018. Claims of him receiving $1,000 through a local agent to pass information to a Pakistani spy are being investigated.

    In January, a soldier who was posted in a tank regiment was arrested from Jaisalmer city in the Indian state of Rajasthan after military intelligence caught him exchanging information about the armoured unit and its movements on social media. 

    Earlier this year, the India's army chief cautioned his men to use social media carefully:

    "We have to be careful while using social media. Even our families should also use social media cautiously…Don't befriend women with names of film stars on social media, these could be honey traps. What makes you think they want to be friends with you? They would not want to be friends with any Tom, Dick and Harry," General Bipin Rawat said.

    In 2018, Indian intelligence agencies apprehended a mole in the Indian Air Force (IAF) who had been compromising sensitive information including classified documents of the IAF headquarters in New Delhi.


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