A Turkish government-run communications service that connects the military and the public has been linked to the Turkish military by cyber security experts, a Reuters investigation has found.
The Teletalk Cyber Service (TKDS), which was launched in April, was supposed to be the only digital information-sharing portal in Turkey, but was soon under scrutiny for its link to the armed forces.TKHS is owned by the military-run General Staff Institute of the General Staff, which also runs the TKDS, and has also been linked in the past to the country’s military intelligence.TKS was set up to act as an unofficial information-gathering portal between the armed services and the general public.
The service has received more than 3 million daily visits, according to a Reuters report.
The military, which runs a private company that has ties to the government, is also behind the Teletask.net website, which is registered to the General Directorate of Military Intelligence (DİB) in the General Headquarters Directorate (GİTİD), and Teletank.ru, which hosts the service.TKK’s ties to military intelligence have come under increased scrutiny after a military officer accused the military of illegally sharing military-specific information with the Teletsk service, the report said.
The DİA had launched an investigation into the issue last month, after it was alleged that the military had been using TKK to share information with TKHS.
But the military denied the allegations, saying the TKK service had been operating independently and had been not using the military’s name.
On Tuesday, the Turkish army’s chief of staff, General Şahin Baydar, said the service was operating in a way that had been approved by the authorities.
He added that the service had not shared military-sensitive information with anyone other than the General Officers Directorate (DOG) and the General Intelligence Directorate (GIİG), which were directly involved in the operation.
The Turkish government has denied the military has used the service to gather information, and that the information it shared with the service is purely military-related.
“There is no such thing as military intelligence service,” Baydar told reporters on Tuesday.
“This is the army’s own information network, and it has never received any military-type information.
We have never received such information from anyone else,” he said.
He said the military would take action against anyone who tried to interfere with the operation, and would be working with the Turkish media and the international community to protect the service’s independence.
Baydar also denied claims by the army that the TKS was operated by a military intelligence unit and that there were no ties between the service and the army.
The army said it was aware of allegations that some military intelligence units were sharing information with TeletK, but said it did not have a relationship with the military intelligence agency.
“It is true that some special units are sharing some information with us,” Baydi told reporters.
“We will cooperate with anyone who wants to investigate it,” he added.
Baydi also denied that the army had any ties with the army intelligence agency and said he had nothing to do with the information-spreading system that the Turkish government used.
“We never have received any information from any military intelligence or any intelligence organization.
If someone says something, we will investigate it.
If they ask us, we tell them,” he told reporters, adding that the Army was working on the system.”
If anyone wants to say that this is the military information service, that’s fine.
We don’t have anything to do,” Baydar said.
Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has repeatedly said that the country needs to strengthen military-centric digital security and prevent cyber attacks on the country.
The TKS website was not registered with the General Services Directorate (GTD), which oversees the countrys army, and its name did not appear in the database of the DĞB.
Baydar also denied the government’s allegations that the intelligence service had a connection with the armed groups and said that he did not know any such connections.
Bayder said that although TKS operated independently of the military, it had been linked with the group since the end of last year, and had received information from them since January 2016.
Bayda also said the TKNs service did not share any information with any other government agency or any other group.
He also denied allegations that TKS had been used to share intelligence with other government agencies, including the foreign ministry, and said Turkey was not a member of any coalition against terrorism.