Between May and September 2023, former Egyptian MP Ahmed Eltantawy was targeted with Cytrox’s Predator spyware via links sent on SMS and WhatsApp after Eltantawy publicly stated his plans to run for President in the 2024 Egyptian elections. As Egypt is a known customer of Cytrox’s Predator spyware, and the spyware was delivered via network injection from a device located physically inside Egypt, we attribute the attack to the Egyptian government with high confidence.
Posts tagged “spyware”
In an investigative collaboration with Access Now, the Citizen Lab has analyzed forensic artifacts from the iPhone of award-winning exiled Russian investigative journalist Galina Timchenko and found with high confidence that on or around February 10th, 2023 it was infected with NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware.
Citizen Lab found an actively exploited zero-click vulnerability being used to deliver NSO Group’s Pegasus mercenary spyware while checking the device of an individual employed by a Washington DC-based civil society organization with international offices. We refer to the exploit chain as BLASTPASS. The exploit chain was capable of compromising iPhones running the latest version of iOS (16.6) without any interaction from the victim.
We identified widespread Pegasus spyware infections within Armenian civil society. We also identified two suspected Pegasus operators in Azerbaijan, whom we call BOZBASH and YANAR.
In 2022, the Citizen Lab gained extensive forensic visibility into new NSO Group exploit activity after finding infections among members of Mexico’s civil society, including two human rights defenders from Centro PRODH, which represents victims of military abuses in Mexico.
At least five civil society victims of QuaDream’s spyware and exploits were identified in North America, Central Asia, Southeast Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. Victims include journalists, political opposition figures, and an NGO worker. Traces of a suspected iOS 14 zero-click exploit used to deploy QuaDream’s spyware.
On July 27, 2022, Citizen Lab senior researcher John Scott-Railton spoke before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. He was invited to provide expert testimony on a hearing devoted to combatting threats to U.S. national security from the proliferation of foreign commercial spyware.
The Citizen Lab, in collaboration with Catalan civil society groups, has identified at least 65 individuals targeted or infected with mercenary spyware, including members of the European Parliament, Catalan Presidents, legislators, jurists, and members of civil society organisations.
Phones belonging to four Jordanian human rights defenders, lawyers, and journalists were hacked with NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware between August 2019 and December 2021. We assess that at least two of the four targets were hacked by Pegasus operators primarily focused on Jordan, based on SMS messages containing Pegasus links that map to a cluster of domain names focusing on Jordanian themes.
يؤكد التحقيق الذي أجريناه أن الهواتف التي تخص ثلاثة أفراد في البحرين قد تم اختراقها في عام 2021 باستخدام برنامج التجسس Pegasus التابع لمجموعة NSO. وافق اثنان من الأفراد المستهدفين على ذكر أسمائهم.