DRDO issues strong advisory to its personnel, says no calls from unknown numbers
New Delhi, May 21: Following the arrest of one of its senior scientists, Pradeep Kurulkar, for allegedly leaking sensitive information to enemy spies, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has issued a strong advisory to its personnel, advising them not to accept calls from unknown numbers and to avoid social media platforms.
"We have been issuing advisories and holding lectures by experts on maintaining cyber discipline but this incident has happened," senior DRDO officials said. "After the arrest of senior Scientist Pradeep Kurulkar, we have issued a strong advisory to all our personnel to maintain cyber discipline like not taking calls from unknown numbers or foreign numbers."
DRDO has also asked its personnel to avoid presence on social media as this can lead to engagement with strangers and one can be a victim of such enemy intelligence operatives, the officials added.
Dr Samir V Kamat, Defence Research and Development Organisation chief, has taken a strong stance on the incident, emphasising that everyone in the defence research agency must behave and act responsibly when using the internet.
According to officials, all personnel must be responsible enough on social media and other applications because many such operations have been attempting to target specific officers using WhatsApp numbers largely from outside the nation.
The DRDO works on strategic initiatives that are almost always classified.
The Maharashtra Anti-Terror Squad arrested top DRDO scientist Pradeep Kurulkar on May 3 on charges of leaking sensitive information to a virtual honey trapper suspected to be a Pakistani intelligence operative.
He was allegedly honey-trapped by a woman he met on social internet last year.
The DRDO had conducted an investigation into his activities and discovered him to be leaking information, thus he was fired as Director of the lab he was leading in Pune.
He was the head of the Pune Research & Development Establishment (Engineers).