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Israeli Spyware Used to Attack Devices of Journalists, Activists: Report

An investigation by the Washington Post and other news organizations has revealed private Israeli spyware was used to hack dozens of smartphones of journalists, human rights activists and executives. operating company.

Israeli spyware company NSO Group is said to have licensed military-grade spyware. The investigation found that the hacked phones were on a list of more than 50,000 phone numbers from countries known to spy on people.

Hidden Stories, a Paris-based journalism nonprofit, and Amnesty International, a human rights organization, shared the list of numbers with The Washington Post and other media organizations.

NSO Group’s Pegasus hacking software – or spyware – developed, marketed and licensed to governments worldwide. It is capable of infecting billions of phones running iOS or Android operating systems.

Experts identified the first version of Pegasus in 2016, which infected the phone through an online phishing scam – a text message or email tricking the target into clicking a malicious link.

However, NSO’s offensive capabilities have evolved since then. It is possible to infect Pegasus using “no-click” attacks, which do not require any interaction from the phone owner to succeed.

They often exploit “zero-day” vulnerabilities, which are bugs or problems in the operating system that are not known to the mobile phone manufacturer and cannot be fixed.

In several statements, the NSO Group denied the report’s findings, claiming that the investigation included “untested theories” based on “misinterpretations of leaked data from information basically accessible and public.”

Amnesty International technical report, according to NSO lawyers, is “a set of speculative and baseless assumptions.” However, they do not dispute any of its specific findings or conclusions.

NSO Group also said it will continue to investigate all credible allegations of misuse and take necessary measures.

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https://www.btimesonline.com/articles/150443/20210719/israeli-spy-software-used-hack-devices-journalists-activists-report.htm | Israeli Spyware Used to Attack Devices of Journalists, Activists: Report

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