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15 May 2020

Who Profits

NSO Group: Technologies of control

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This company feature will present the activities of NSO Group, a private Israeli cyber company with a record of human rights violations, shedding light on the militarized nature of Israel’s hi-tech sector. It will highlight the company’s dealings with oppressive regimes, as well as its new coronavirus data analytics system... An investigation by Citizen Lab revealed that NSO Group spying technology was allegedly used in at least six countries with a history of tracking human rights activists: Bahrain, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates... It has been reported that the company also provided the Saudi government with the spyware to spy on the journalist Jamal Khashoggi before his murder.

... In March 2020, Bloomberg reported that NSO developed a new product that has the ability analyze huge volumes of data to map people’s movement. According to a report by Motherboard, the data is displayed in a user interface that allows analysists “to track where people go, who they meet, for how long, and where.” The tool tracks citizens by assigning them random IDs, which the government can de-anonymize at any given moment. According to media reports, the product is already being piloted in a dozen countries.