Israeli spyware firm used to target Palestinian, BLM activists

Occupied Palestine (QNN)- An Israeli company that sells spyware to governments targeted Black Lives Matter and Amnesty International websites as well as Palestinian activists, according to a new report by Citizen Lab.

At least 100 activists, journalists and government dissidents across 10 countries were targeted with spyware produced by an Israeli company called Candiru, according to cybersecurity researchers at the University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab, which tracks illegal hacking and surveillance.

Citizen Lab researchers issued a report on Thursday about the Tel Aviv-based firm marketing “untraceable” spyware that can infect and monitor computers and phones.

Using a pair of vulnerabilities in Microsoft Corp.’s Windows, cyber operatives operating in Saudi Arabia, Israel, Hungary, Indonesia and elsewhere purchased and installed remote spying software made by Candiru, according to the researchers.

Candiru infects targets is through web domains. It was associated with URLs masquerading as NGOs, women’s rights advocates, activist groups, health organizations and news media. Citizen Lab’s research uncovered websites tied to Candiru with domain names such as “Amnesty Reports”, “Refugee International”, “Woman Studies”, “Euro News” and “CNN 24-7”.

The Citizen Lab researchers said the Candiru spyware is part of a thriving private industry selling technology to governments and authoritarian leaders so they can gain access to the communications of private citizens and political opposition. Another Israeli company, NSO Group Ltd., has been accused of providing spyware to repressive governments that have used it to snoop on journalists and activists.

(Source / 17.07.2021)

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