With the help of Pegasus , the matter of spying on journalists, activists and influential people has been discussed all over the world, but now the tools of espionage of governments have changed.
The new report states that governments are now using spyware named Hermit to spy on high-profile people. These high-profile people include business executives, human rights activists, journalists, academicians and government officials.
Spyware can be installed on the target device by simply sending an SMS.
Security researchers gave information about spyware
The new spyware was first reported in Kazakhstan, followed by cases of its use in Syria and Italy.
Security researchers from cyber security company Lookout said in a blog post, “Our analysis suggests that the spyware, named ‘Hermit’, was developed by Italian spyware vendor RCS Lab, and telecommunications solutions company Tykelab Srl acted as its frontend.” Still working.”
Kazakh government used against protesters
Security researchers Lookout reported that the hermit was first seen in Kazakhstan in April.
Several months later, it emerged that the Kazakh government had used it to suppress demonstrators who opposed its policies.
The spyware was also used in investigations against corruption in the north Kurdish region of Syria and Italy. Lookout found that this malware works on all Android versions.
Hermit is different from other spyware in this way
Lookout researcher Paul Shank told TechCrunch in an email how Hermit differs from other app-based spyware.
“Hermit first checks the Android version of the device and after several times it adapts the behavior of the operating system version. This distinguishes it from app-based spyware,” he said.
In this way the Hermit adapts to different versions and keeps on spying in secret.
Spyware is used to spy on smartphone users. With spyware, hackers also get access to the user’s microphone and camera and can record the activity done in the smartphone in real-time.
It starts like a phishing attack
Researchers have reported that massaging Android apps linked to spyware can be spread with the help of text messages.
It works like a phishing attack, in which the user thinks that the message has been sent from an original source.
Messages are sent by telecom companies and brands like Samsung or Oppo and they are given a download link. Many users rely on these messages and download spyware.
Spyware keeps working in the background
Hermit spyware targets Android phones, although no version has been revealed to target iOS devices like Pegasus.
This spyware displays fake pages imitating the original websites of the brands and starts massaging activities in the background.
Tasks like recording calls, accessing messages and controlling mobile devices can be done with spyware.