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India faces yet another online security ‘threat’

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It is not Google Earth but Wikimapia which is the biggest concern of security agencies. It is called Wikimapia. The website, which derive its name from Wikipedia, combines high resolution satellite and mapping imagery created by Google Maps and the easy interactivity of Wikipedia.

In the case of Wikimapia, users can go to wikimapia.org, identify locations on the high-resolution maps there and enter more information about the locations. The information gets automatically stored on the maps. The site has already added four million locations since it was created in May 2006. The site can be accessed in 64 languages and a user does not need to be tech-savvy to access all the information available (unlike on Google Earth). Security personnels in India believe that any person can go and post any kind of information about the installations in India and there is very little space to stop it. It is next to impossible to catch such people who place vital and sensitive information, but the risk they pose is very big. India is badly affected: all major installations, including Rashtrapati Bhavan, air force airfields, army installations and headquarters and nuclear research centres are plotted on the site. In certain cases, users have identified defence installations, leaving additional information.

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