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Tag: spyware (page 1 of 1)

Apple releases update patching zero-day vulnerability affecting all devices

Apple has released a security update patching a zero-day vulnerability that affected all devices like iPhones, iPads, Mac, and Apple Watches. The vulnerability, titled “ForcedEntry ” was detected by Citizen Watch. It was used to silently hack at least one Bahraini activist and was utilized to push Pegasus spyware, developed by Israeli NSO, to the activist’s phone. The spyware was able to break Apple’s new BlastDoor protection as well.

Source: Techcrunch


Epic Games CEO criticizes Apple’s “govt spyware”

Amidst the outpouring criticism for Apple’s new iCloud Photos and messages child safety initiatives, Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney has accused it of installing govt spyware under the guise of iPhotos. “Though Apple wrote the code, its function is to scan personal data and report it to the government,” he tweeted. Contrary to the accusations, an AppleInsider report stated that Apple’s system works differently.

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NSO Group’s Cloud infrastructure shut down by Amazon

AWS has closed off accounts and infrastructure linked to Israeli software company NSO Group. NSO group’s spyware Pegasus was used to hack the phones of journalists, government officials, and human rights activists around the world. 17 newspaper publications conducted investigations and reported the incident. The Israeli company denied the reports while Amazon has not clarified if the accounts were directly linked to the NSO Group.

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How to detect if NSO’s Pegasus spyware targeted your smartphone

The Mobile Verification Toolkit, or MVT, works on both iPhones and Android. It allows scanning a whole iPhone backup for any signs of compromise. In the outputted files, if the toolkit discovers a possible compromise, it will state so. iPhones had more forensic traces than Android smartphones, making it easier to identify on iPhones. Govts across the world used NSO Group’s spyware to hack into the phones of journalists, activists, politicians, and business executives.

Quick Heal identifies 8 apps on Play Store infected by joker spyware 

Quickheal has detected eight apps on the Play Store affected by joker malware with a total download count of 50,000. Google has been informed and the apps have been removed from the Playstore. Joker interacts with ads to steal users’ information. Once access is granted, it subscribes the user to paid premium services, causing a loss of money without the knowledge of the user. It downloads two payloads that infect the device and steal personal information.

Journalists’ iPhones hacked with NSO ‘zero-click’ spyware

Journalists at Al-Jazeera have been targeted by advanced spyware in an attack likely linked to the govt of Saudi Arabia and the UAE, cybersecurity watchdog Citizen Lab said. The most alarming part is that iMessages were infecting mobiles without victims taking any action. Malware used push notifications to instruct phones to upload content to servers linked to the NSO Group turning iPhones into surveillance tools without luring users to click on suspicious links or texts.

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Google ads policies: Google to ban promotion of stalkerware, spyware

As per Google’s updated ads policies, ads that promote spyware, stalkerware etc will be banned from advertising, starting 11 August 2020. Examples of the products refrained from advertising include – spyware, tech used to monitor intimate partners, GPS trackers marketed to spy someone without consent, surveillance equipment with spying intent. However, child activity trackers are excluded. If violated, a 7-day warning prior to account suspension will be issued.

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This newly discovered Mac malware combines ransomware and spyware 

ThiefQuest – new and dangerous ransomware with spyware feature, for Apple’s Mac computers have been discovered by K7 Lab. This ransomware can hold data for ransom and can steal it also, irrespective of ransom paid or not. The ransomware component of TheifQuest is weak, signalling that data hostage is not the key purpose of the attackers. Apple devices, it is known, are usually hit with lesser malware attacks than Windows devices.

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Fake Aarogya Setu App carrying spyware components spotted

SonicWall Labs found a fake Aarogya Setu app with spyware, capable of making phone calls, audio/video recording, and SMSes. While one such fake app with imperfect icon copy, runs in the background without any activity on the screen, the other two are downloaded as add-ons gaining system’s permission. They also install the legitimate app in the background to avoid user suspicion. Even if users uninstall the app, the malicious code still remains in the system.

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