Imagine living in a world where your mobile becomes an instrument of constant surveillance that too without your knowledge!🤯
Every picture you click, every transaction you make, every meme you share is being tracked and monitored. Sounds straight out of an episode of Black Mirror right?
Now, what if we tell you that we haven’t borrowed this from any science fiction novel or show. This is what is exactly happening to many people around the globe right at this moment. Felt a chill run down your spine?😱
Well, grab some popcorn and read on to know more about this real-life horror show.
What the hell is happening?
The entire hullabaloo about cyberthreats and cybersecurity going on right now centres around the spyware called Pegasus. Apparently, it can turn your phone into a 24-hour surveillance tool. Sounds creepy right? Well, that is because it is. 🙀
The software has been developed by the Israeli security company NSO and is only distributed to vetted government agencies to fight terrorism and other heinous crimes.
How does it affect my phone?
Once your phone is infected, the sender-essentially the person who has sent the malware gains access to your phone including your phone’s mic and camera. So every call you make, every picture you take, every screenshot captured can be monitored by the sender. The spyware also has the potential to track your location. Went to get biryani for lunch? Well, the sender sitting in another corner of the globe might know that.👨💻
The spyware goes back to 2016 and at that point, it usually hacked a phone through traditional means like sending a malicious mail or message and prompting the user to click on it.
However, with time Pegasus can now cause “zero-click” attacks. In other words, it can infect your phone without you having to even interact with it. For example, it can be achieved through a simple WhatsApp call and your phone can be infected even if you don’t receive the call *brb…going to uninstall Whatsapp?*.
Even Apple, which flexes about its superior security, came under fire after Pegasus’s zero-click technique exposed serious security loopholes in i-phones. 😟
Should I go and burn my phone already?
Well, pardon us if you were already thinking that. But you can sit back and relax. This software is only given to vetted governments to control crime and terrorism. So seemingly common people don’t really need to freak out about it.😌
But one can never be too careful. As the practice of hacking and spying is increasing at a meteoric rate all around the world, it isn’t impossible for any rogue organisation to get hold of this software or manufacture such spywares for their personal gains. Make sure to always keep your phone updated. Update your apps regularly and keep changing passwords especially for the ones that have sensitive information. 2 Factor authentication is really good idea as well, enable it if you haven’t already!
So what do you think, is Big Brother watching us or are we already living in a science fiction? Tell us in the comments below.
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It is a comfort to know that Pegasus is given to only Governments. Yet similar Spyware could could be developed and used indescriminately or who knows whether already being used?