• Pegasus spyware, capable of switching on cameras and mics, linked to list of 50,000 phone numbers

    ... and targeting journalists in 50 countries, targeted by 10 states.

    One Mexican journalist was on the list and 2 months later was killed, although journalists are frequently killed in Mexico.

    The spyware is reportedly from Israeli company NSO Group (although there are many other similar companies). The software is sold to governments (only those who have been 'approved by Israel') to deal with 'terrorism' and 'criminals,' but is used by governments against their own civil society (journalists, activists, dissidents, lawyers) and heads of state.

    The software is almost undetectable on your phone. It is not the kind of malware that you have to stupidly click something to have it install (spearfishing). It uses a zero-click exploit, using some app on your phone. It's not known which apps, but one is WhatsApp: it infected phones using a WhatsApp call and you don't even have to pick up the call. It has root access to the device (can do anything, including see all keystrokes, use camera, mic, contacts, archives, location). It might be stored in a temp file in RAM instead of on the hard drive.

    The only way to get rid of it currently is get a new phone and new SIM.

     
  • DOJ used powers to legally spy on Journalists and elected members of Congress

    We don't know everything about the story, or what led to the Trump admin investigating journalists, because of the US's secrecy (even in its court trials).

    Rather than investigating the journalists, they went to the tech companies that had the emails and other information and served them not only a warrant for the information, but a gag order (non-disclosure order). Once the gag orders expired, companies were able to notify the journalists.

     
  • Danish journalists come forward with US spying report

    Allegedly (so far these are only allegations), in 2013 during the days of Edward Snowden's revelations the Obama government was spying on German and other leaders of US-allied countries, Danish foreign intelligence agency FE signed a deal with the NSA so that the Americans could intercept communications (tap phones and messaging of German and other allied leaders) using their own software following the 911 attacks in 2001.

    Following Snowden's publishing the documents about this activity, a report was created but it was never made public, but now six of the very few people who ever saw it decided to come forward.

    It is expected there will now be pressure to publish it, especially considering Danish and other European individuals were targeted. It is being reported that current US pres Biden was significantly involved in the operation. He was VP from 09-17.

    German, France and other EU states are waiting for better, more certain information before responding publicly.

    Newscasters on several channels reported the story with smiles of bemusement or low-key glee.

    #InternationalRelations #Snowden #journalism
        

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