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WhatsApp hackers install surveillance on users’ phones — just by CALLING

May 14, 2019 |

By The Sun

HACKERS installed spy software on phones using a major WhatsApp flaw just by calling them, it was revealed last night.

Even if the call was not picked up, the software would be installed.

NINTCHDBPICT0004743231961 WhatsApp hackers install surveillance on users' phones -- just by CALLING [your]NEWS

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It gave hackers full access to phones remotely, allowing them to read messages, see contacts and switch on the camera.

The Facebook-owned messaging app is urging all its 1.5billion users to update their apps to protect themselves from further attacks.

It said the hacks targeted specific users and were carried out by “an advanced cyber actor” using software developed by Israeli cyber arms dealer NSO Group, according to the Financial Times.

The software was installed on targets’ devices using the WhatsApp voice calling function.

Even if the call was not picked up, the software would be installed and the call would even be deleted from the device’s call log.

WhatsApp’s security team spotted the flaw and rolled out a fix on Friday.

NINTCHDBPICT0004743231961 WhatsApp hackers install surveillance on users' phones -- just by CALLING [your]NEWS

It is not clear how many devices were affected, but WhatsApp said the attack was ‘highly targeted’

 

ACCESSES CAMERA

NSO Group’s flagship Pegasus software can collect intimate data from a target device.

It can even access a device’s microphone and camera as well as gather location info.

In a statement, the group said: “NSO’s technology is licensed to authorised government agencies for the sole purpose of fighting crime and terror.

“The company does not operate the system, and after a rigorous licensing and vetting process, intelligence and law enforcement determine how to use the technology to support their public safety missions.

“We investigate any credible allegations of misuse and if necessary, we take action, including shutting down the system.

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