Will probe proof of misuse, shut down if necessary: Israel's NSO on Pegasus row
New Delhi, July 22: Israeli surveillance firm NSO Group, which is at the epicentre of the ongoing Pegasus snooping row, issued a fresh statement saying the list of Indian phone numbers reported as potential surveillance targets for hacking by the government is "not related to the NSO group."
"In light of the recent planned and well-orchestrated media campaign lead by Forbidden Stories and pushed by special interest groups, and due to the complete disregard of the facts, NSO is announcing it will no longer be responding to media inquiries on this matter and it will not play along with the vicious and slanderous campaign," the statement said.
"Any claim that a name in the list is necessarily related to a Pegasus target or Pegasus potential target is erroneous and false. NSO is a technology company. We do not operate the system, nor do we have access to the data of our customers, yet they are obligated to provide us with such information under investigation.
NSO will thoroughly investigate any credible proof of misuse of its technologies, as we always had, and will shut down the system where necessary," the statement was quoted by News 18.
An international media consortium has claimed that several Congress leaders including Rahul Gandhi, two union ministers, Trinamool Congress leader Abhishek Banerjee and some 40 journalists were among those whose phone numbers were listed as potential targets for hacking through the Israeli spyware which is usually supplied to government agencies.
The Indian government and Israeli surveillance company NSO Group, which sells Pegasus spyware worldwide, have refuted the reports.