UPDATED: July 29, 2021, 17:09 IST
The cybersecurity firm NSO Group on Thursday confirmed the inspection of its offices by Israeli authorities and said the company was “working in full transparency” with the representatives from Israel probing into the Pegasus snooping row.
In a statement to India Today on Thursday, a spokesperson for NSO said, “We can confirm that representatives from the Israeli Ministry of Defence visited our offices. We welcome their inspection. The company is working in full transparency with the Israeli authorities.”
“We are confident that this inspection will prove the facts as declared repeatedly by the company [NSO] against the false allegations made against us in the recent media attacks,” the spokesperson added.
WHY DID ISRAELI OFFICIALS INSPECT NSO’S OFFICES?
A team from the Israeli Ministry of Defence visited the NSO Group headquarters on Tuesday to conduct an inspection as part of its probe into the Pegasus snooping row. NSO Group sells the Pegasus spyware.
Israel earlier appointed an inter-ministerial team to assess media reports following an investigation by 17 media organisations, which said NSO’s Pegasus software had been used in attempted and successful hacks of smartphones belonging to journalists, government officials and human rights activists.
While Israel has said it is looking into the issue with the utmost seriousness, NSO has maintained that the report about Pegasus was “full of wrong assumptions and uncorroborated theories”.
Pegasus is intended for use only by government intelligence and law-enforcement agencies to fight terrorism and crime, the company has said.
The NSO also said it does not know the specific identities of people against whom clients use Pegasus, but that if it receives complaints it can acquire the target lists and unilaterally shut down the software for any clients found to have abused it.