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Article

5 Oct 2021

Author:
AFP

Scandal-hit NSO backs international spyware rules

The Israeli company at the heart of the Pegasus surveillance scandal on Tuesday said it would support international regulation to prevent repressive governments from abusing powerful spyware like its own.

In a letter to the United Nations, seen by AFP, the NSO Group expressed "strong support for the creation of an international legal framework" to govern technology that allows for highly invasive snooping on people's mobile phones.

NSO was engulfed in controversy in July over reports that tens of thousands of human rights activists, journalists, politicians and business executives worldwide were listed as potential targets of its Pegasus software...

The company's letter to the UN, dated September 30, came in response to a call in August from human rights experts at the world body for a moratorium on such digital surveillance technology until regulation is put on place.

... Critics say the widespread availability of software like Pegasus now allows even cash-strapped authoritarian governments to effectively purchase their own answer to the United States' National Security Agency, with highly invasive surveillance powers.

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