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Thursday, February 27, 2014

IDF bans WhatsApp

The IDF has banned the use of WhatsApp, the popular messaging application for smartphones that was purchased by Facebook last week, in all operational contexts. The reason: Fear that it will cause information to fall into the wrong hands.
The IDF Information Security Department issued tough guidelines Wednesday night prohibiting soldiers from using popular messaging application Whatsapp on their smartphones to convey IDF-related information, according to Army Radio. WhatsApp is a cross-platform mobile app which allows users to exchange messages without having to pay telecom charges.
According to the broadcast, the IDF has agonized over whether or not to allow smartphones on base, over concerns about the potential for serious security leaks.
The branch notes that seemingly innocuous chatter over a WhatsApp group can easily reveal enough intelligence information to prove dangerous if it falls into the wrong hands. The Office of the Chief of Staff finalized the new guidelines, which prohibit using the app in any operational context. 
"Out of concern that information revealed in a WhatsApp group could reveal critical information about the IDF and its operations, assessments were carried out to determine the security risks of the situation by the Information Security Department, and new guidelines were issued," the IDF stated. "In accordance with Information Security Department policy, there is a ban on using WhatsApp for operational needs."
I won't tell you what I think of WhatsApp except to say that I don't use it.

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