NSO Group Pegasus spyware found operating in 45 countries


In internet scans conducted between August 2016 and August 2018, Canada's Citizen Lab identified a total of 45 countries in which operators of Israel-based NSO Group's Pegasus spyware may be conducting surveillance operations. Pegasus is mobile phone spyware that targets are coerced into installing via a carefully constructed phishing attack; clicking on the exploit link installs the spyware without the user's knowledge or permission and bypasses the phone's security protections to send the phone's private data and ongoing communications to the operator's command and control servers. At least ten of the operators Citizen Lab found appear to be actively engaged in cross-border surveillance. Six of the countries with significant Pegasus operations - Bahrain, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, and UAE - have been previously linked to using spyware to target civil society. 


Writer: Citizen Lab
Publication: Citizen Lab

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