Although it seems something out of a James Bond movie, digital espionage has been an act carried out by agencies and governments of different countries in an attempt to obtain information for different purposes.
Over time, tools have emerged that have made this an increasingly sophisticated activity. However, there is not always a perfect crime and in the case of espionage there have been several occasions in which this act has been detected.
This was what happened recently when a report was released by WhatsApp about the Pegasus spyware after its use to commit acts of espionage against officials from different countries.
Already in May 2019 the company had revealed this situation when it filed a lawsuit against the Israeli spyware manufacturer NSO Group, in charge of manufacturing the Pegasus software and with which the intervention of communication systems and devices used by journalists, lawyers, activists and high-ranking officials from around 20 countries.
During the investigation process of the cyberattack WhatsApp received help from The Citizen Lab, a laboratory at the University of Toronto specialized in different areas, including the detection of acts of digital espionage.
Pegasus facilitates the infiltration of the person into mobile devices, both Android and iOS. Once installed on these, Pegasus begins linking with the control servers, which later, execute commands on the intervened devices to collect all the information of interest that may be stored in these.
Pegasus also has different hacking modes to be applied on these, including zero-day exploits. In the case of countries like India, there is no exact number of the persons of the people who were affected by this spyware.
However, WhatsApp through a blog reported that they sent a message to 1400 users through which they were notified that they had been the victim of acts of espionage. It remains to wait and see what measures WhatsApp will take in the future to enhance security on its platform and stop this type of attack.