• Ed Snowden: Infamous Israeli Spyware 'Pegasus' Helped Kill Khashoggi

    From Virus Guy@1:396/4 to All on Thu Nov 8 08:58:29 2018
    From: Virus Guy <Virus@Guy.C0M>

    Ed Snowden: Infamous Israeli Spyware 'Pegasus' Helped Kill Khashoggi

    Thu, 11/08/2018 - 17:35

    Via MiddleEastMonitor.com

    US whistle-blower Edward Snowden yesterday claimed that Saudi Arabia
    used Israeli spyware to target murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

    Addressing a conference in Tel Aviv via a video link, Snowden claimed
    that software made by an Israeli cyber intelligence firm was used by
    Saudi Arabia to track and target Khashoggi in the lead up to his murder
    on 2 October inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.

    Snowden told his audience:

    “How do they [Saudi Arabia] know what his [Khashoggi's] plans were
    and that they needed to act against him? That knowledge came from the technology developed by NSO,” Israeli business daily Globes reported.

    Snowden accused NSO of “selling a digital burglary tool,” adding it
    “is not just being used for catching criminals and stopping terrorist
    attacks, not just for saving lives, but for making money […] such a
    level of recklessness […] actually starts costing lives,” according to
    the Jerusalem Post.

    Snowden – made famous in 2013 for leaking classified National Security
    Agency (NSA) files and exposing the extent of US surveillance – added
    that “Israel is routinely at the top of the US' classified threat list
    of hackers along with Russia and China […] even though it is an ally”.

    Snowden is wanted in the US for espionage, so could not travel to Tel
    Aviv to address the conference in person for fear of being handed over
    to the authorities.

    The Israeli firm to which Snowden referred – NSO Group Technologies – is
    known for developing the “Pegasus” software which can be used to
    remotely infect a target's mobile phone and then relay back data
    accessed by the device. Although NSO claims that its products “are
    licensed only to legitimate government agencies for the sole purpose of investigating and preventing crime and terror,” this is not the first
    time its Pegasus software has been used by Saudi Arabia to track critics.

    In October it was revealed that Saudi Arabia used Pegasus software to eavesdrop on 27-year-old Saudi dissident Omar Abdulaziz, a prominent
    critic of the Saudi government on social media.

    The revelation was made by Canadian research group Citizen Lab, which
    found that the software had been used to hack Abdulaziz' iPhone between
    June and August of this year. Citizen Lab's Director Ron Deibert
    explained that such actions by Saudi Arabia “would constitute illegal wiretapping”.

    A separate report by Citizen Lab in September found a “significant
    expansion of Pegasus usage in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)
    countries in the Middle East,” in particular the United Arab Emirates
    (UAE), Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. Citizen Lab added that in August 2016, Emirati human rights activist Ahmed Mansoor was targeted with the
    Pegasus spyware.

    Snowden's comments come less than a week after it emerged that Israeli
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asked the United States to stand by
    Saudi Crown Prince Mohamed Bin Salman (MBS) in the wake of the Khashoggi
    case. The revelation was made by the Washington Post , which cited
    information from US officials familiar with a series of telephone conversations made to Jared Kushner – senior advisor to President Donald
    Trump and Trump's son-in-law – and National Security Adviser John Bolton regarding the Khashoggi case. The officials told the Post that:

    In recent days, Egyptian President Abdel Fatah Al-Sisi and Israeli
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have reached out to the Trump
    administration to express support for the crown prince, arguing that he
    is an important strategic partner in the region, said people familiar
    with the calls.

    Bin Salman has come under intense scrutiny in the month since Khashoggi
    first disappeared, with many suspecting his involvement in ordering the
    brutal murder. Yet while several world leaders have shunned the crown
    prince, it is thought that Israel would suffer from any decline in Saudi influence in the region in light of its purportedly central role in the upcoming “Deal of the Century”.

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