While most leaders appear to have been targeted by Moroccan NSO clients, one Indian client attempted to target Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan.
A number of world leaders and diplomats have been potential targets for the Pegasus spyware The Guardian and other news outlets linked to the Paris-based Forbidden Stories reported. The spyware, developed by Israel’s NSO Group and sold to nation-states like India, appears to have been heavily used in surveillance of journalists, activists, politicians and now world leaders. Le Monde reported Destinations in India included diplomats and ambassadors from Pakistan, Iran, Afghanistan, China and Nepal. Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan and French President Emmanuel Macron are also among the world leaders concerned.
Who spied on whom?
According to Forbidden Stories, this is a list of world leaders and diplomats affected by Pegasus surveillance, and the countries that appear to have tried to sniff did so between 2016 and 2019:
- Cyril Ramaphosa, President of South Africa, seemed from a. to have been targeted Rwanda NSO customer.
- Emmanuel Macron, President of France, seemed from a. to have been targeted Moroccan NSO customer.
- Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the Director General of the World Health Organization, seems to have been targeted by a Moroccan NSO customer.
- Saad Hariri, former Prime Minister of Lebanon, seems to have been targeted by a United Arab Emirates NSO customer.
- Charles Michel, President of the European Council and former President of Belgium, seems to have been targeted by a Moroccan NSO client.
- Mohammed VI, King of Morocco, seems to have been targeted by a Moroccan NSO client.
- Saadeddine Othmani, Prime Minister of Morocco, appears to have been targeted by an NSO customer in the same country.
- Imran Khan, the Prime Minister of Pakistan, seems to have been attacked by one Indian NSO customer.
- Felipe Calderón, former President of Mexico, seems from a. to have been targeted Mexican NSO client.
- Robert Malley, US special envoy for Iran, seems to have been targeted by a Moroccan NSO client.
The Washington Post reported that NSO said, “We can confirm that at least three names in your query, Emmanuel Macron, King Mohammed VI, and Tedros Ghebreyesus – are not and have never been targeted by NSO Group customers. […] All French and Belgian government officials or diplomats mentioned in the list are and have never been Pegasus targets. “
The Indian government did not denied Buy Pegasus from NSO. Since 2019 it has been said that this is not the case illegal People sniff but never directly said it’s not an NSO client. This is despite the fact that NSO’s Pegasus allows hacking in addition to regular surveillance, the former being illegal in India.