The iPhone of a famous Russian journalist was infiltrated by NSG Group’s Pegasus spy software.
According to The Hacker News, Galina Timchenko – a famous Russian journalist – had Pegasus her iPhone infiltrated by NSO Group’s spy software. This is the finding from a joint investigation between Access Now and Citizen Lab.
Timchenko is the executive editor and owner of Meduza, an independent news publication based in Latvia. The intrusion is believed to have occurred on or around February 10, 2023. It’s unclear who deployed the malware on the device.
The Washington Post quoted a close source as saying that the Russian government is not a customer of NSO Group. Citizen Lab said that during the infection process, this journalist’s device was located in the GMT+1 time zone and Ms. Timchenko said she was currently in Berlin, Germany. The day after being infected with Pegasus, she was scheduled to attend a private meeting with other heads of independent Russian media living in exile in Europe.
The hacking behavior using a zero-click exploit is called P WNYOURHOME discovered in April 2023. This method combines iOS HomeKit and iMessage to defeat BlastDoor protections.
infected iPhone incident The Pegasus came after Timchenko received a warning from Apple on June 23, 2023, stating that state-sponsored attackers may have targeted her iPhone.
This is the first recorded case of the famous spyware being installed on a Russian person’s phone. Pegasus, developed by Israel-based NSO Group, is a spy tool capable of collecting sensitive information from infected devices.
It can be installed on a phone remotely without the victim clicking a link or taking any other action, a technique known as zero-click exploitation. While Pegasus appears to be licensed to governments and law enforcement agencies to tackle serious crime, it has been repeatedly misused.
News of the spyware infection also comes days after Apple rushed to patch two iOS zero-day vulnerabilities that were used to distribute Pegasus. Users at high risk of spyware attacks should enable Lockdown mode on their iPhones to minimize these threats.