News East West
LONDON: After Edward Snowden’s disclosures that the National Security Agency (NSA) of the US is spying on Indian missions at the UN and in Washington by planting high-tech bugs, the Indian high commission in London has abandoned the use of the Internet for sending sensitive documents.
Instead, the Indian mission has now started using typewriters for sensitive documents.
The Indian mission here has reportedly cautioned its staff to be vigilant about bugs inside the building and use typewriters while dealing with top-secret documents.
Indian high commissioner Jamini Bhagwati told the Times of India, “No highly-classified information is discussed inside the embassy building. And it’s very tedious to step out into the garden every time something sensitive has to be discussed.
“Top secret cables are never conveyed through the internet or machines with cable connections. External hard drives with tremendous amount of data storage capacity are easy to access. Therefore, top secret cables are written on the typewriter which can’t be tracked.’’
Since the NSA operates closely with Britain’s spy agency, GCHQ, is there a possibility of the British spy agency helped the NSA in spying on the Indian mission in Britain?
“The British might have got bored with what they hear us talking inside the embassy. They must be saying ‘this is what the Indians talk’,’’ the Indian envoy was quoted as saying.
The Hindu newspaper this week carried reports of the NSA spying on Indian missions at the UN headquarters in New York and Washington.