CEO of Israeli Spyware Company Steps Down
On Sun., Israeli spyware firm NSO Group, the maker of the controversial Pegasus spyware, said that its CEO Shalev Hulio will step down, with COO Yaron Shohat to oversee a company-wide reorganization until a permanent replacement is found.
- On Sun., Israeli spyware firm NSO Group, the maker of the controversial Pegasus spyware, said that its CEO Shalev Hulio will step down, with COO Yaron Shohat to oversee a company-wide reorganization until a permanent replacement is found.
- The company - which has faced legal action over allegations that its software has been used by governments and agencies to hack the phones of dissidents, activists, and journalists - will also dismiss 100 of its 700 employees.
- While NSO claims its software is only sold to governments to investigate national security and crime-related matters, it was allegedly used to target Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi days before he was murdered.
- Although NSO keeps its clientele list confidential, its clients have reportedly included Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Hungary, and India. In 2021, the US blacklisted the company, claiming it acted "contrary to the...interests of the United States."
- In a statement, Shohat said NSO's "products remain in high demand with governments and law-enforcement agencies because of its cutting-edge technology and proven ability...in fighting crime and terror."
- NSO also said the reorganization will "examine all aspects of its business," adding that it will work to "ensure NSO remains one of the world's leading high-tech cyber intelligence companies" with a focus on aiding NATO.
Sources: Guardian, Al Jazeera, and Register.
- Pro-establishment narrative, as provided by The Times of Israel. NSO - which only sells its software to governments and agencies after approval from Israeli's Defense Ministry - has been used to successfully catch countless criminals and terrorists. In light of allegations of misuse, the company has worked to mitigate this by cutting off parties who abuse the technology and implementing safeguards.
- Establishment-critical narrative, as provided by The Wire. Even though NSO claims to not intentionally sell its technology to bad actors, software like Pegasus has been used for illegal spying far too many times to be trusted. If these security issues can't be solved through regulation, then it should be shut down completely.