Pakistan thwarts 'major cyberattack' by Indian intel agencies — army

In this photo taken Wednesday, March 7, 2012, people use the Internet at a local cafe in Islamabad, Pakistan. (AP/File)
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Updated 12 August 2020

Pakistan thwarts 'major cyberattack' by Indian intel agencies — army

  • Say all government departments have been asked to strengthen cybersecurity measures
  • Indian High Commission did not comment despite being contacted by Arab News

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s intelligence agencies identified a major cyberattack launched by Indian spy network, said an official statement released in Rawalpindi on Tuesday, adding that government departments were asked to strengthen their cybersecurity measures. 

The military’s media wing, ISPR, said in its statement that the cyberattack involved a “range of cybercrimes including deceitful fabrication by hacking personal mobiles and technical gadgets of government officials and military personnel.” 

“Various targets of hostile intelligence agencies are being investigated,” it said. 

The Pakistan Army has enhanced necessary measures to thwart such activities, including action against the violators of standing operating procedures (SOPs) related to cybersecurity, the statement added. 

The Indian High Commission in Islamabad did not comment on Pakistan’s claim even after it was contacted by Arab News. 

Tensions have remained high between the two South Asian nuclear-armed neighbors since February 2019 after a suicide attack on an Indian paramilitary convoy killed about 50 soldiers in Indian-administered Kashmir. 

Since then, the two countries have fought aerial dogfights, downgraded their diplomatic relations, and challenged each other on various international forums over the status of the disputed Kashmir region. 

The two countries also altered their national maps, claiming territories under each other’s political control, and witnessed a significant increase in the number of skirmishes along the Line of Control and the Working Boundary.


In memory of daughter, Pakistani man runs Dubai desert to raise awareness of ‘newborn screenings’

Updated 22 min 23 sec ago

In memory of daughter, Pakistani man runs Dubai desert to raise awareness of ‘newborn screenings’

  • Seven years ago, Akbar Naqvi lost his adopted daughter Zahra Beau Naqvi to an undetected metabolic disorder
  • Now he runs to raise awareness and funds for newborn screenings that test babies in their first days of life for disorders that can hinder normal development

DUBAI: A Pakistani man has run 200 kilometers through the Al-Qudra desert in Dubai last month to raise awareness about “newborn screenings,” the practice of testing babies in their first days of life for disorders that can hinder normal development.
Seven years ago, Akbar Naqvi lost his adopted daughter Zahra Beau Naqvi to an undetected metabolic disorder. Now the owner of a fintech company in Dubai runs to raise awareness, and funds, for newborn screenings so other parents and children don’t have to go through what his family did.
Last month, the 44-year-old ran 42 hours across Al-Qudra in what he described as “the ultimate test of human endurance.” He slept only two hours and only took very short breaks along the way. His run, on August 28-29, coincided with the beginning of Newborn Screening Awareness Month, internationally observed in September.

Akber Naqvi is taking a short rest during his 200-kilometer run across Al-Qudra desert in Dubai on Aug. 28, 2002. (Photo courtesy of Akber Naqvi via AN)

“I ran to raise awareness on the importance of newborn screenings,” Naqvi, who set up the ZB Foundation in Islamabad, told Arab News this week.
Newborn screening is a simple blood test taken from the heel of a child to check for autoimmune disorders.
Naqvi and his wife Danielle Wilson Naqvi realized within their daughter’s first month of life that “something was wrong with Zahra,” Naqvi said.
Doctors were initially unable to diagnose the problem but “we then got a test done and found out that Zahra suffered from a metabolic disorder called glutaric acidemia type 2, which went undiagnosed at birth due to lack of newborn screening,” Naqvi said.
“By the time we found out, it was too late.”
A month after Zahra’s passing, the Dubai-based couple received a call from Pakistan that another baby girl needed parents. They adopted her and soon Danielle also gave birth to twins — a boy and a girl.
But Zahra is continuously present in their memory, they said, inspiring them to help other children survive through the foundation set up in her name.
The ZB Foundation has an agreement with 40 hospitals across Pakistan and has to date conducted over 30,000 free screenings of newborn babies, Naqvi said. It is now coordinating with the government of Pakistan to make newborn screenings compulsory nationwide.
“In Pakistan this test is not mandatory,” Naqvi said, “so if the hospital had the capability, and which is every baby’s right, Zahra’s disorder would have been diagnosed in time.”