THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The state police Cyberdome is working overnight along with many national and international agencies to decrypt encrypted messaging on various social media communication platforms like Telegram and WhatsApp. Following revelations that extremist outfits were pooling cadres from the state through encrypted messaging applications, the Cyberdome ventured to decrypt the messages.
Many international police agencies as well as cops in Karnataka and Maharashtra are believed to be working on this. The efforts of Cyberdome assumes significance as Ansar Al-Khilafah, the pro-IS group cracked by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) the other day, was also found to be using Telegram for communication. Malayalis who went missing under suspicious circumstances two months back were also using Telegram.
Cyberdome has roped in the service of IT experts from various firms operating from Technopark to research on decryption on a voluntary basis. “Many investigation agencies are involved in research on decrypting apps like Telegram and many are even able to make some progress. However, the firms operating these apps also keep on changing the encryption patterns frequently, which makes things difficult for the investigation agencies,” said Thiruvananthapuram-range IG Manoj Abraham, who is the nodal officer of the Cyberdome,
Meanwhile, the investigating agencies are also pinning hopes on the proposed National Encryption Policy of the Centre. The policy is aimed at mandating that security agencies get access to decrypted form of encrypted messages upon demand. The Centre recently sought response from industry bodies on bringing out the policy. Though the Centre brought out a draft encryption policy last year with stringent provisions, it was held back owing to public outcry over breach of privacy.