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Fake profiles used to hack soldiers' phones
Don't talk to strangers; aftermath of the Hamas smart phone hack
Phones belonging to soldiers who were tricked by Hamas into downloading malicious software are now being checked by the IDF; no arrests made, but new rules to regulate soldiers’ social media pages.

The issue of Hamas posing as attractive girls on Facebook as a ruse to hacking the phones of soldiers in the IDF has exposed only a small part of the work that the IDF Information Security Unit does. The unit has been busy dealing with various operational challenges and information sharing over the past several years, changing with the circumstances.

 

 

While soldiers are not required to leave their smart phones at the entrances of their bases, and while they are still allowed to say that they are soldiers in the IDF on their Facebook profiles, the IDF is increasingly aware of this trend as it attempts to deal with its consequences.

 

The Information Security Unit is working to prevent further leaks, specifically of classified information from soldiers who hold high security clearances, and is working to keep soldiers from taking pictures of IDF bases, both to keep them from putting them up on Facebook, and also in case their phones get hacked.

 

Hamas is using these fake Facebook profiles to talk to soldiers (Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Unit) (Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
Hamas is using these fake Facebook profiles to talk to soldiers (Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Unit)

 

Soldiers are having their Facebooks scoured to look for any photos which may contain sensitive information. If and when a photo is identified, the soldier's commander is notified, and the commander must order the soldier to take down the picture.

 

While most of the soldiers only received a warning from their commanders, some may be put in military prison for 28 days.

 

No one tried as of now

 

In cases in which the extent of the leak be deemed to consitute a larger than expected, or extremely sensitive piece of information leaked, the IDF's criminal investigations unit may be called upon to investigate soldiers.

 

However, most of the soldiers invovled thus far were combat soldiers, and seem to have been genuinely duped without anyintention of transferring information to the enemy.

 

Soldier speaking to who he thinks is a hot girl, but is really Hamas (Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
Soldier speaking to who he thinks is a hot girl, but is really Hamas (Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Unit)

 

(Translation of above pictures):

Hamas member, posing as an attractive woman: Can you download an app called 'YC.'

Hamas: Where did you go?

Soldier: Whats that app?

Soldier: I'm here babe.

Hamas: It's a simple app that allows us to video chat.

 

The IDF is currently checking soldiers' phones who were tricked into downloading the insidious app. However, as of now, the photos all seem to be personal and of a benign nature. Indeed, little more is seen in the pictures beyond soldiers posing with friends in tanks or at lookout points. The personal pictures from the phones' galleries do not seem to have caused any tactical or operational harm to the IDF.

 

New rules put in place in lightof the revelations now forbid anyone who is ranked Captain or above to have a Facebook page, and calls on soldiers with Top Secret security clearance to delete their page as well.

 

There are units and people in the IDF who are already barred from opening social media pages.

 

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