Leading tech firms call NSO Group spyware dangerous in legal filing

Cisco, Microsoft, Google and other renowned technology companies have reportedly stated in a rare combined legal filling that Spyware manufactured by NSO Group is very powerful as well as harmful and the Israeli firm needs to be held accountable to the United States anti-hacking laws.

An amicus brief that was filed by the businesses in support of WhatsApp, which has prosecuted NSO Group in the US, seems to mark a key turning point within the leading messaging app’s legal fight against NSO Group, and has also sent a firm signal that the globe’s largest technology firms are rallying in opposition of wide-scale penetration of hacking tools made by private businesses.

At the core of the case is WhatsApp’s claim that nearly 1,400 of its users, including human rights advocates, politicians, journalists, and diplomats have been targeted by spyware of NSO Group over a two-week interval in 2019. The popular messaging app, which is owned by FB, sued Israel’s NSO Group after the suspected targeting was discovered, blaming Israeli spyware firm for the intrusion attempts.

After losing a significant lower court ruling concerning the merits of its arguments in its justification in the case, NSO Group appealed against the lower court’s decision at a higher court in the U.S.

The Israeli firm is arguing in front of an appeal court in the U.S. that it should have full immunity from the United States anti-hacking laws since it works on behalf of unidentified sovereign government clients.

For several years, activists like Amnesty International have strongly argued that using spyware causes a fundamental risk to human rights. The tech firms, in the legal filing agreed, stating that other governments could use the technology in malicious ways.

As of now there have been noteworthy absences in the filed amicus brief. Apple, whose products alleged susceptibilities to NSO Group’s spyware had been unveiled in a report regarding the alleged hacking of dozens of journalists at Al Jazeera as well as Amazon, with founder Jeff Bezos’s personal cellphone supposedly being hacked in 2019 by Saudi Arabia.

Source credit: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/dec/22/nso-group-spyware-dangerous-say-tech-firms-in-legal-filing

Sunil Jha has been a part of the content industry for over 3 years now. Having previously worked as a voice over artist and sportswriter, he now focuses on penning down articles across numerous topics, for JustPositivity.com. With a business-oriented educational background, Sunil brings forth the expertise of intensive research and a strategic approach in his pieces.