We’ve tried to find answers to some of the questions about the NSO company’s background and details about how Pegasus software works.
NSO Group is a private software company operating in Israel, founded in 2010.
The company’s most popular software is Pegasus. Which can secretly access Apple’s iPhone and Android phones. And spy on and monitor them.
According to the company, 60 governments are using spyware in 40 countries around the world. According to the Washington Post newspaper, which is also part of the research project. The NSO company has about 750 employees. And last year the company’s annual revenue was more than 240 million.
Novalpina, a London-based private equity firm that has the majority shares of the company.
Who are the customers of NSO?
According to the NSO, they cannot disclose this information.
The purchase of Pegasus requires the permission of the Israeli government. Because all the documents of its purchase and sale are kept completely confidential.
However, according to the research organization Citizen Lab, they have identified the victims of Pegasus spyware in more than 45 countries around the world. Names included Pakistan, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Bangladesh, Singapore, Oman, Libya, Lebanon, Etc.
According to research by Amnesty and Forbidden Stories, there are at least ten countries that are users of Pegasus spyware. These countries include India, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Morocco, Hungary, and Rwanda.
Read more: India Used Pegasus Spyware For Imran Khan
What is Pegasus Spyware?
Pegasus maker NSO says its software is designed to be used against terrorists and criminal elements. And that the company only sells the software to countries that are good at human rights.
How does Pegasus work?
Pegasus installs itself on the victim’s phone at the click of a link. Which is sent via email or message. Giving the spy full access to the victim’s phone.
This includes all data on the phone’s hard drive. Such as photos and videos, emails, calendars, messaging apps, and more.
In addition, this software can listen to. And record conversations on or near the phone using the phone’s camera, mic, etc.
According to a recent report by Amnesty International and Forbidden Stories. The latest version of Pegasus can install itself on the target phone without any link or download of any content.
Experts call this capability ‘Zero Click Vulnerability’. Meaning it can be inserted into a phone without clicking a link or sending a message. And this feature makes it more lethal than other spy software.
How is protection from pegasus possible?
Global organizations working on cybersecurity and digital rights, including Amnesty International, have developed a security tool. That could help defend against Pegasus.
In addition, the following precautions may be effective.
Avoid clicking on any links received in suspicious messages or emails.
In case any person receives a document or file. First, verify with the sender. That he/she has sent the content. And in case of any doubt, delete it immediately without downloading it.
Update your mobile and its applications regularly. As updated versions of applications are more secure than older versions.