Militants using ‘Calculator’ to avoid surveillance by Army


New Delhi, June 8: A new app ‘calculator’ has been found on smart phones of militants infiltrating into J&K which helps them to remain in touch with their handlers across the border without being detected by technical surveillance mounted by army.

-Representational Picture
-Representational Picture

With the number of militants infiltrating from across the border showing a steep rise this year, the Army found that militants carried a smart phone with no messages stored in it.

The Army’s signal unit, which relies mainly on technical intercepts like usage of wireless and mobile phones by infiltrating terror groups to track them, is burning midnight oil along with National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO) and other agencies to crack this mechanism used by the militants.

The technology was first used by a US-based company during Hurricane ‘Katrina’ so that the affected residents could remain in touch with each other.

During interrogation of some of the militants of Lashker-e-Taiba (LeT), the agencies came to know that the terror outfit had modified it and created an application ‘calculator’ which can be downloaded on smart phones attached to the off-air network created specifically for them.

The technology is based on the concept of ‘cognitive digital radio’ that enables users to turn their smartphones into peer-to-peer, off-grid communication tools.

The network generates its own signal through proprietary adhoc networking protocols and automatically coordinates with other units within range which enables users to send and receive text messages, share their GPS locations on offline maps regardless of access to WiFi or cellular service.

The militants apprehended had their phones paired with the radio sets along the border and were receiving instructions about the route and terrain, official sources quoting interrogation details of some apprehended militants said.

In a related development, the army is trying to plug the holes in the anti-infiltration grid and has already started redeployment of troops.

The infiltration of militants from across the border by end of April this year stands at around 35 in Kashmir area.

All the security agencies were unanimous about infiltration from the Jammu side where they claimed militants made three infiltration bids which were foiled by troops.

According to the sources, the militants, who infiltrated recently, have already gone to higher reaches of Bandipora from where they have moved towards central and south Kashmir.

During winter, infiltration is always low. However, this year, winter did not last long and militants are suspected to have taken advantage of the favourable weather conditions, sources said. (PTI)