Facebook this week filed a lawsuit against a reputed spyware provider that allegedly exploited a WhatsApp vulnerability to enable smartphone hacking, and also pursued legal action against the domain hosts of multiple websites that allegedly offer tools for hacking the social network.
On Tuesday, Facebook and its encrypted messaging subsidiary WhatApp filed a complaint against NSO Group, an Israeli tech and cyber intelligence firm that has garnered a reputation for selling exploits and surveillance to governments, law enforcement agencies and private entities. NSO's parent company Q Cyber Technologies was also named in the complaint (provided here, courtesy of The Register), which was presented to the U.S. District Court of Northern California.
Facebook is accusing the two businesses of using WhatsApp accounts and servers in unauthorized fashion to distribute malware to roughly 1,400 targeted mobile devices in April and May of 2019. Owners of these devices included human-rights advocates, journalists, political dissidents, diplomats and senior foreign government officials, including those with phone numbers based in the Kingdom of Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Mexico, the Menlo Park, California-based social media company asserts.
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