The Indian Army has launched an indigenous secure messaging application called “Secure Application for the Internet” (SAI) that offers support for end-to-end encryption for text, voice, and even video calling services for Android devices over the internet, the Ministry of Defence said on Thursday, 30 October.
As per Entrackr, the app has been developed by Col Sai Shankar and has been tested by the government’s nodal agency CERT-in-impanelled auditor and Army Cyber Group.
At the moment, it is confirmed that the application has been developed to be used by the soldiers of the Indian Army. There are no reports on whether it will be made available for the general public.
Information about features, security and user interface is yet to be revealed.
“The model is similar to the commercially available messaging applications like WhatsApp, Telegram, SAMVAD and GIMS and utilises end-to-end encryption messaging protocol. SAI scores over on security features with local in-house servers and coding, which can be tweaked as per the requirements,” said the ministry.
The ministry has added that the filing of the Intellectual Property Rights, hosting of infrastructure on NIC (National Informatics Centre) and the process of developing the app for iOS devices is still under progress.
The Indian Army had been proactively advocating against the use of commercial messaging services and applications that compromise the data security of the personnel.
Soon after the Indian government has banned 59 Chinese apps it had also asked the Indian Army to ban the use of 89 other apps like Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Vigo and even the dating app like Tinder.
It was in November last year that the ministry had released an advisory asking its top-ranked officers not to use messaging apps like WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger (that tout to be end-to-end encrypted) to share any official information.