Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #Spyware

Most recents (24)

#Israeli company #NSOgroup is still selling #PEGASUS,
its CEO Yaron Shohat told Swiss TV @RSInews while @Europarl_EN is ready to vote on #PEGA report

“Tools that allows our customers -government agencies - to gather #intelligence to fight terror and crime”

In his first TV interview, CEO of blacklisted #NSOgroup Yaron Shohat says he’s committed to do “anything possible” to make sure #PEGASUS and other tools are in proper hands and used correctly”

But not 100% sure about misuse

SwissTV @RSInews
#PEGASUS used in the past to spy on activists, journalists, politicians.
#NSOgroup CEO admits that “users might use it for different purposes” but insists that the #Israeli company sell the #spyware “for the sole purpose of fighting crime and terror”

Read 4 tweets
The @Europarl_EN Committee that investigated the use of #Pegasus & equivalent surveillance #spyware released its report.
Extracting key paragraphs [relevant to Palestine] in this 🧵
👉Bottomline: Absence of regulations&secrecy fuel repression in the name of "national security"
"The findings of the PEGA inquiry are shocking and they should alarm every European citizen. It is evident that the trade in, and use of spyware should be strictly regulated. The PEGA committee will make a series of recommendations to that effect."…
"PEGA has received minimal or no answers from national authorities about the acquisition and use of spyware in their Member States... Vendors and countries issuing export licenses (mostly Israel) share no information about their customers."
Read 12 tweets
#NSO Group went into a tailspin after earning the ire of the 🇺🇸US Government.

Some mercenary #spyware newcomers like #Paragon started spending big & strategizing to try & stay on America's good side.

However... 1/

By @MehulAtLarge…  	Please use the sharing to...
2/ Countries with sordid histories of mercenary #spyware abuse... tend to re-abuse whatever new hacking toy they get.

Which #Mexico has been doing for the better part of a decade with #Pegasus etc.

#Paragon is playing with fire.  	Please use the sharing to...
3/ TLDR: #Meico's spyware scandals:

Things started heating up in 2016 when we first found #Pegasus targeting a journalist.

It exploded from there. And accelerated with #Pegasusproject.

In 2018, new president claimed things had changed, but fresh abuses tell a different story. ImageImage
Read 3 tweets
Dissidents must continue to live in fear of #Pegasus #spyware thanks to @CreditSuisse.

Which helped them survive US Government blacklisting.

@ajsaeedy @dnvolz… The lenders have been worki...
2/ And don't forget, Happy Gilmore's producer actually co-controls #NSO Group's shell company.

3/ Fraudsters, people doing #HumanTrafficking, torturers, drug traffickers, fraudsters & more.

Add #spyware companies to the list.

If you aren't up to speed on @CreditSuisse doing bad people's banking, start here.… ImageImageImage
Read 4 tweets
What in the Half Baked is going on?

A Low-budget Hollywood producer w/ties to #China is now co-director of the entity that holds #NSO Group.

Robert Simonds has no history with #spyware, but a bunch of Adam Sandler producer credits. 1/

By @omerka… ImageImageImageImage
2/ Here's Robert Simonds on why🇨🇳#China's @TencentGlobal is a great owner of his @STXfilms.

Why is a Hollywood producer w/a history of biz messes & a #MeToo scandal mixed up with the 🇺🇸US sanctioned notorious #Pegasus spyware maker?

3/ Robert Simonds' sudden involvement with an entity identified by the US Government as posing a counterintelligence & national security threat... screams for federal & congressional scrutiny.

Also, where did the funds come from for his #Pegsus / #NSO Group deal? ImageImage
Read 4 tweets
Good to see some movement from Germany.

However, the @bka doing business with #NSO Group is embarrassing.

German inertia is an avoidable lead weight on European regulatory efforts & ability to lead on the spyware crisis.

cc @GermanyDiplo & #BKA Präsident Holger Münch
Europe has a mercenary spyware crisis.

And #Germany @GermanyDiplohas has the opportunity to lead & participate in multilateral efforts.

Choosing instead to help keep notorious #spyware companies afloat is... puzzling.

#Überwachungssoftware. .… Image
Policymaking around commercial #spyware tends to be captured by security establishments.


Yet many countries have grown to recognize the harms to other sectors... and their governments' own security.

Something of which #Germany & @Bundeskanzler is acutely aware.
Read 4 tweets
NEW: notorious spyware firm #NSO Group, maker of #Pegasus has spent millions on foreign agents & lobbying operations in the US.

Their most recent target? The American Bar Association @ABAesq.

By @incisayki @OpenSecretsDC… Since 2020, NSO Group has p...
2/ NSO's Russia & China claims didn't sway the Biden Admin / NSC.

Because they are silly.

Countries that don't buy Chinese fighters won't suddenly buy their secret spy tech. For the same obvious reasons.

Still, NSO apparently warmed these canards up & served them to @ABAesq. The American Bar Associatio...
3/ As the fox, NSO says they are uniquely positioned to get all the hens together to craft regulation.

In case @ABAesq folks are wondering, these stakeholders:

- won't take NSO's meetings (most of congress)
- have sanctioned them (USG)
- have sued them (Industry, civil society) Image
Read 4 tweets
NEW: European Parliament's @EP_PegaInquiry
has issued their final report.

Urges #EuropeanUnion towards stronger regulation. Calls out several abusers.

Good thread on highlights👇 Image
"strategic campaign to destroy media freedom" in 🇭🇺 #Hungary.

"a system for the surveillance of the opposition...designed to keep...the government in power" in 🇵🇱#Poland

The @EP_PegaInquiry PR is not mincing words about #Pegasus #spyware abuses in the 🇪🇺#EU Image
The @EP_PegaInquiry also raises serious questions about spyware abuses in 🇬🇷#Greece & 🇪🇸#Spain.

It's clear: spyware is a European problem. Image
Read 7 tweets
NEW: @POTUS' recent executive order has some commercial #spyware companies publicly fretting.


Pumping the brakes on reckless proliferation is the goal.

By @InesKagubare ft @james_a_lewis… James Lewis, a senior vice ...
2/ For *a decade* the commercial #spyware industry told the world that it was capable of self control.

The big players even paid an army of ex US officials to beat back regulation.

Instead, they fueled a global hacking crisis & eroded US national security.
3/ Many Ex US officials took #NSOGroup cash.

Mike Flynn, Tom Ridge, Juliette Kayyem, Jeh Johnson, Rod Rosenstein, etc.

And while they were doing that?

At least 50 🇺🇸 officials got targeted.

Countless more among our closest allies.

By @drewharwell… ImageImageImageImage
Read 6 tweets
PSA: Have an #iPhone?

Do you think because of who you / what you do, someone may try to hack you?

Try enabling #LockdownMode.

For the first time, we found evidence that it does frustrate *certain* hacking attempts. 🧵1/ Image
2/ Here's the research I'm talking about👇

Basically, we @citizenlab found some sophisticated #Pegasus #spyware hacking attempts against human rights groups were getting stopped by #LockdownMode.

3/ When #LockdownMode first came out last year a lot of people were pointing out: hey, this mode degrades some features!

(#Apple is also up front about this)

So there was this question: are the trade-offs worth it?

Well, we finally have some evidence of it doing its job.
Read 7 tweets
NEW INVESTIGATION: recent Mexican #Pegasus spyware abuses led us to evidence of a trio of zero-click exploits used by #NSO.

Targets? HomeKit & FindMy.

Remarkably, #Apple's #iOS #LockdownMode blocked one of them.

Quick THREAD 1/… Image
2/ First, the new victims: Mexican lawyers representing families of victims of Military abuses

The timing of the targeting matches key developments in efforts to hold #Mexico's army responsible.

It's really bad.

We @citizenlab forensically confirmed the spyware infections. One infected device belongs...ImageImage
3/ We found evidence of 3 #zeroclick #0day chains used by NSO's #Pegasus #spyware in 2022.

First: #PWNYOURHOME: worked against #homekit even if you didn't set up a home.

Apple's changes in iOS 16.3.1 that address.

#LockdownMode also kneecaps it. ImageImageImageImage
Read 6 tweets
Remember #Predator mercenary spyware was delivered to #RSF, the militia attempting the coup in #Sudan right now.

Reporters described the tech as having the "potential to tip the balance of power"

By @cr0ft0n @telloglou @e_triantafillou & @omerbenj… ImageImageImageImage
2/ It won't just be #Sudan.

It isn't abundantly clear, commercial #spyware proliferation is on track to play a growing role in geopolitical instability. Image
Was it worth it? This is exactly the question.

Without oversight and control, unfortunately, this will keep happening.

Read 4 tweets
BREAKING: mercenary #spyware developer #QuaDream is closing on heels last week's @citizenlab report.

Per Israeli media just now. 1/

By @omerka & @meirorbach… Image
2/ The sudden closure of #QuaDream follows hard times for the Israeli #spyware company, with our report being described as the "nail in the coffin."

[text = machine translated from Hebrew]        The immediate backgr...
3/ Thing about spyware companies: key threat also the people & the IP.

Like arms dealers they may try to rebrand elsewhere.

But we at @citizenlab have the ability to spot their tech & will endeavor to track it wherever it pops up.

And make sure that accountability follows.
Read 7 tweets
I had a candid conversation about commercial #spyware proliferation. And transparency.

With @ODNIgov director Avril Haines, DHS @SecMayorkas & @Youtube CEO @nealmohan

Moderated by @MarietjeSchaake at the #SummitForDemocracy

2/ For a decade civil society sounded the alarm about commercial #spyware.

Great to see @POTUS' Spyware EO & yesterday's joint statement from 11 govs.

I think it's big progress!

But we're also not going to refrain from telling uncomfortable facts & calling for transparency.
3/ DHS @SecMayorkas asks me question of his own: impact putting NSO on the Entity List.

I was surprised by it's outsize impact.

Now that we know new bad players, we wonder: who gets listed next?

I also note Rep @jahimes questions about further actions that can be taken.
Read 5 tweets
Desde hoy está en vigencia esta ley que entre varias "novedades" también legaliza el #ciberespionaje desnaturaliza la #flagrancia y amplia la #militarización del país.
Se habilitan "cláusulas especiales de seguridad" para TODO contrato público en sectores estratégicos y servicio básicos. Así, FFAA darán garantías a las empresas extranjeras que asuman los negocios más rentables del país.
En el #SemáforoEnRojo No. 19 lo analicé este asunto. léelo aquí:
Read 16 tweets
NEW: 11 countries ink joint statement on countering commercial #spyware proliferation & abuse.

Cite "fundamental" national security & foreign policy interest 1/

🇦🇺#Australia 🇨🇦#Canada 🇨🇷#CostaRica 🇩🇰#Denmark 🇫🇷#France 🇳🇿#NewZealand 🇳🇴#Norway 🇸🇪#Sweden 🇨🇭#Switzerland 🇬🇧#UK 🇺🇸#US We, the governments of Aust...The misuse of these tools p...To advance these interests,...engaging additional partner...
2/ I'd say the joint statement on commercial #spyware is unprecedented.

A few years ago spyware like #Pegasus was was treated as a human rights issue.

But the dizzying speed of proliferation made big problems for governments, forcing them to prepare positions & action.
3/ The statement's commitment guardrails for accountable domestic #spyware use is important.

But devil will be in the implementations. Civil society will be watching.

(Note: issue wasn't covered in White House Spyware Executive Order on Monday, so nice to see USA commit here) Image
Read 9 tweets
BREAKING News: 🇺🇸 @POTUS @WhiteHouse issues Executive Order: limits federal government use of commercial #spyware from vendors that target US persons + facilitate human rights violations / transnational repression...…
The EO prohibits use from commercial spyware firms whose technology is used to target activists, academics, journalists and other members of civil society, or is used by states with a track record of systematic human rights violations… ImageImage
The EO also prohibits use that presents a national security risk to the US, as when the spyware has been used to target U.S. personnel without legal authorization 👇

Context: 🇺🇸 identified devices associated with 50 U.S. gov personnel abroad — across at least 10 countries —…… Image
Read 12 tweets
BREAKING: Biden White House issues executive order on commercial spyware.

Also confirms over 50+ USG personnel suspected targeted w/#Pegasus

Huge deal, let me break the new #SpywareEO down. 1/ ImageImage
2/ Investment fuels spyware proliferation. A lot of that is predicated on the juicy dream of the USG as the ultimate customer.

The new #SpywareEO says to mercenary spyware vendors & backers: decision time.

Either stop contributing to proliferation right now, or lose our number.
3/ Biden's #SpywareEO's closes door for vendors if their spyware has:

❌Been used against USG
❌Has counterintelligence / foreign intel risks

❌ Abused for repression
❌Used on 🇺🇸Americans
❌Sold to govs that systematically do political repression. ImageImage
Read 19 tweets
🧵#Israel/#Myanmar: In wie weit ist der israelische #Spyware Hersteller #Cognyte an der Ermordung von der #Rohingya-Bevölkerung in Myanmar verwickelt? Klage am obersten Gericht gegen #Cognyte und ungenannte Beamte des Verteidigungs- und Außenministeriums eingereicht. 1/x Israel/Myanmar: In wie weit ist der israelische #Spyware Her
2/x Fest steht, dass das Unternehmen eine Ausschreibung zum Verkauf von #Spyware an #Myanmar vor dem #Putsch gewann.
3/x #Israel|s #Cognyte Software Ltd hat einen Monat vor dem Militärputsch im Februar 2021 eine Ausschreibung zum Verkauf von Abhör-Spyware an ein unterstütztes Telekommunikationsunternehmen des Staates #Myanmar gewonnen, wie aus geprüften Dokumenten von @Reuters hervorgeht.
Read 40 tweets
NEW: clear US policy towards mercenary spyware industry in the new #NDAA.

And it's *bad news* for shady spyware companies.

Quick thread of highlights from Sec 6318 of this robust bit of legislation 1/
2/ First, there's a yearly reporting requirement from the intelligence community.

Including deep dive into the finances, corporate structures of mercenary spyware companies.

And their customers.

And who is actually being hacked + whether that includes targeting of US. #NDAA
3/ Next, the DNI gets the authority to prohibit purchase & use by USG of mercenary spyware.

AND can block US Intelligence from doing biz with companies that have acquired mercenary spyware.

There is a waiver authority.
Read 6 tweets
BREAKING: @Google just exposed Variston, a previously-unknown mercenary #spyware vendor.

Based in 🇪🇸#Spain.

#Europe can't go a week without a spyware scandal. 1/

By @_clem1 & @benoitsevens at Google TAG… Continuing this work, today, we’re sharing findings on an
2/ Google's Threat Analysis Group first learned of Variston's shenanigans...from an anonymous tip.

Someone clearly had it in for the mercenary #spyware vendor.

But also: yet again, suggests that EU Governments really aren't doing much to rein in sketchy commercial players.
3/ Google TAG found Variston could exploit Chrome Browser & Firefox.

And Windows Defender.

Diverse little portfolio of ways to get onto a device.

Google thinks they were being used as 0-days before being fixed.

Ft. @ifsecure @maddiestone & @_tsuro
Read 7 tweets
Mercenary spyware was secretly flown to "blood soaked" Sudanese militia.

Uncovered thanks to an employee selfie.

Reminder: #EU inability to tackle #spyware crisis = global consequences.

Report by @cr0ft0n @telloglou @e_triantafillou
& @omerbenj…
Heirs to the murderous #Janjaweed have a global phone #hacking capability.

Reflect on the #NationalSecurity implications.

We've warned of this for a decade.

Yet policymakers still dither on mercenary #spyware.

It will only get worse.

Mercenary spyware companies persuaded regulators to leave them largely unregulated.

The #Sudan #militia sale is the logical conclusion.

These companies won't stop until they've burned our collective house down.
Read 7 tweets
What is a #Keylogger in Computer?

A keylogger is an insidious form of #spyware. You enter sensitive data onto your keyboard, believing nobody is watching. In fact, keylogging #software is hard at work logging everything that you type.
Keyloggers are activity-monitoring software programs that give hackers access to your personal data. The passwords and credit card numbers you type, the webpages you visit, all by logging your keyboard strokes.
The software is installed on your computer, and records everything you type. Then it sends this log file to a server, where cybercriminals wait to make use of all this sensitive information.
Read 4 tweets
This is a thread on the curious #catalangate and on the presumed espionage of separatist leaders in Catalonia. First a disclaimer: I do not intend to defend in any way the Spanish secret services, whose in my view either for action or omission have contributed to the scandal 1/ ImageImageImageImage
On 18 April 2022 journalist @RonanFarrow wrote a column on @NewYorker called "Spy on their Citizens"… explaining that @citizenlab had found evidence of the use of the Pegasus spyware (by Israeli @NSOgroup) on Catalan politicians, lawyers and activist...2/
...the article explains that the finding was possible because a pro-independence Catalan politician, Jordi Solé, brought his iphone to a pro-independence Catalan activist, fellow of @citizenlab, Elies Campo, in March 2022. Campo confirmed suspicion of malware infection, but ...3/ ImageImage
Read 794 tweets

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