Pegasus is spyware that was originated by an Israeli company NSO group. It is again in the news due to its accusations over the surveillance, which is now targeting the journalists and the government.  

Pegasus spyware is thought to be the most advanced of all the similar products on the market. It can readily penetrate apple’s mobile operating system, iOS, as well as Android devices. Governments were supposed to employ Pegasus on a per-license basis for specifically the defense purpose from the terrorist activities. Moreover, it gains access easily that too into brand-rich devices like iOS, Android, Microsoft.  

Smart peeking and fastest access 

Pegasus is so fast and hacks into your device in a blink of an eye. You might get a missed call and your phone is hacked, messages are accessed and whatnot. Just by a single missed call, it gets secretively installed into your phone. Your complete device is under their access, WhatsApp messages are seen, banking passwords are stolen. What else are we left off then?  

Does security have its presence or the global hackers overtaking will be the dominant one in a decade? Just a thought 

Allegations of wiretapping and peaking 

The spyware, according to Facebook, used its video calling system and a unique weakness to transfer malware to mobile devices.  

NSO that is the originator of Pegasus is accused of creating phony WhatsApp accounts and then using them to make video calls. When an unwary user’s phone rings, the attacker gets malicious code to the phone. It will automatically install the spyware even if the victim did not answer the call. 

The attacker will then use Pegasus to acquire access to the phone’s systems. It will include the user’s WhatsApp messages and calls, ordinary voice calls, passwords, contact lists, camera, etc. Few hacking occurred wherein the phone numbers of the targets will be then kept on a database. The list was released to several major news organizations. It is unknown where the list originated or how many phones were compromised. 

NSO denies illegitimate hacking 

The National Security Organization (NSO) has denied any misconduct. The software was designed to follow criminals and terrorists, and it was only offered to military, law enforcement, and intelligence agencies from nations with good human rights records, according to the report. A global collaborative investigation found that the malware was used to target over 1000s mobile phones around the world. Pegasus most likely targeted over 300 mobile phone numbers in India. 

Wait, meanwhile of reading this written piece, also keep checking your devices and messages. As we will be playing the malware protection witness in the coming years, if speculations are to be believed. 

How did this hacking even start? 

A hacker would usually try to infect a victim’s device with Pegasus by sending a phishing link, which is usually distributed through a message and appears to be harmless. 

Without the victim’s knowledge, clicking on the phishing link would initiate the download of Pegasus on the device and establish a connection with a hacker’s computer, which may be thousands of miles away. 

The hacker can use the remote command center to communicate with the Pegasus spyware and give it instructions of the information it should send back to the hacker’s server. 

Who is the owner of pegasus? 

Pegasus was created by the Israeli company NSO Group, which was founded on January 25, 2010. Pegasus’ developer, the Israeli corporation NSO Group, prohibited the sale of the system to state intelligence agencies and others in May 2019. 

NSO’s purpose, according to the amnesty report, was to “create technology that would allow law enforcement and intelligence services with direct remote access to mobile phones and their content — to grow the use of encryption in the digital environment.” 

Who uses pegasus? By the way! 

NSO does not reveal who purchases its software. However, the company’s website claims that its products are only used by “government intelligence and law enforcement organizations to stop crime and terror.”  

Is pegasus used by Indian security agencies? 

There is a lack of clarity on the subject. Still, some information is left on the table,  

Dayanidhi Maran, the Lok Sabha MP, was asked in the house in November 2019. 

Does the government tap WhatsApp conversations and messages with the use of Pegasus? Kishan Reddy, the former minister of state for home affairs, did not respond to questions concerning tapping or Pegasus in writing. Well, that says a lot!! 

Resulting facts 

Pegasus can harvest all of a mobile device’s data and secretly listen in on conversations using the device’s microphone. On the other hand, it has been under scrutiny for some time due to its spying activities. Well, even that is not a surprise, considering the type of malware practices that are happening all across the globe.  

It has to face some amount of stringent policies or the consumers, government, media, journalists and even we will be under the 24/7 thought running and threat. Let’s see what the coming IT, software practices have to unfold to its threat ending.