Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has said that the Indian Navy chief Admiral Sunil Lanba has been asked to analyse the nature of the Scorpene submarines data leak. According to The Australian, France’s DCNS, which is making six Scorpene-class submarines for the Indian Navy, suffered a massive data leak pertaining to the combat capability of these lethal weapons. The report suggests that 22,000 pages of documents have been leaked in France in 2011. “The Navy Chief has been asked to analyse as to what exactly has been leaked,” Parrikar told reporters today. “This came to my knowledge at 12 midnight. It looks like a case of hacking,” Parrikar said, adding that the, “first step is to identify if it is related to us.”
In collaboration with the Mazagon Dock Limited, DCNS is making six submarines for India, the first of which may be inducted as early as end of this year. Kalvari, the first of the Scorpene-class submarine has undergone extensive sea trials earlier this year. The remaining five submarines of the Project 75 are expected to be delivered by MDL to the Indian Navy by 2020. They are set to form the core of Indian Navy’s submarine arm for the next two decades. Given the importance of these submarines in enhancing India’s defence capabilities, the security implications of the data leak may actually be huge.
The details in the documents that have been leaked will create strategic problems for India, Malaysia and Chile, all of which operate the same submarine, Reuters said. “As a serious matter pertaining to the Indian Scorpene programme, French national authorities for defence security will formally investigate and determine the exact nature of the leaked documents,” Reuters reported a DCNS spokeswoman as saying.