Pegasus is spyware produced by NSO Group, it’s an Israeli surveillance company, that helps spies and spies hack phones. In 2019, the situation came to light when WhatsApp charged the business in a US court. In July 2021, an investigation by an international media consortium announced that more than 50,000 phones were targeted by Pegasus spyware.
What is Pegasus?
Pegasus Spyware is malicious software designed to enter your computer equipment, collect your data, and distribute it to third parties without your permission. Pegasus is probably the most powerful spyware ever. This Smartphone is designed to infiltrate Android and iOS and use them in surveillance devices.
The NSO group, however, sells it as a tool to detect terrorists and criminals for targeted espionage and not as a public surveillance single license, which can be used to infect various Smartphone, costing $70 million. It can be up to Rs. Following the 2016 price list, NSO Group sold its customers for $650,000 to infiltrate 10 devices and an additional installation fee of $500,000.
How does it work?
Pegasus exploits bugs, undiscovered vulnerabilities in Android and iOS devices. This indicates that the phone may be infected even if it has the latest security patch installed. An earlier version of the 2016 spyware infected Smartphone using a method called “spear-phishing”: text messages, emails containing malicious connections, or links were sent to the victim. It depended on the victim clicking on the link which was accomplished in later versions. As of 2019, Pegasus can log into a device with a call or missed call on WhatsApp and also delete the record of this call or missed call, making it difficult for a user to understand that they were targeted. In May 2021, WhatsApp said that Pegasus took advantage of a bug in its code to infect more than 1,400 Android and iPhone phones in a way it soon fixed the bug. Pegasus also takes advantage of bugs in iMessage, providing it with a backdoor access to millions of iPhones. Spyware can also penetrate and be installed on wireless transceivers, radio transmitters and receivers located near a target.
How can you prevent Pegasus Attack?
There are mechanisms in place to determine if your device has been compromised. While the biggest people are unlikely to be targeted by this type of intervention, there are still easy steps to take to reduce the potential vulnerability to Pegasus and other malicious intrusions. “At a personal level, one step to protect you from Pegasus is to update the OS and mobile apps. There is a need for OS and mobile app developers to fix vulnerabilities to prevent the invasion of sophisticated and zero-click spyware like Pegasus. Users should avoid clicking on links in messages and emails by an unfamiliar sender. Similarly, Internet calls from unfamiliar senders should be avoided.
Pegasus is powerful spyware, currently, we cannot protect our devices. Some Precautions We Can Take Against Spyware Attacks
- Only open links from well-known and trusted contacts and sources while handling your device. Pegasus is deployed to iOS devices via iMessage Link. The same method cybercriminals use for both spreading malware and technical scams.
- Make sure your device is updated with any applicable patches and upgrades. Holding a standardized version of the OS creates a stable base for criminals to target, yet it is your most reliable protection.
- Although it may seem obvious, you should restrict physical access to your phone. Do this by allowing PIN, thumb, or face-locking on the device. Configure your device securely.
- Encrypt your equipment, data and authorize remote-wipe feature where possible. If your machine or device is lost or stolen, you will have some assurance that your data can remain safe.