TECHNOLOGY

This US company has sold iPhone hacking equipment to spies in the United Arab Emirates


Jeremy Jones, a spokesman for Optive, wrote in an email that his company “cooperated fully with the judiciary” and Optive “is not the subject of this investigation.” That’s right: the investigation is about three former U.S. intelligence and military personnel who worked illegally with the UAE. However, the role of Aquant as an exploit developer and seller was important enough to be submitted to the Court of Justice.

Images exploitation was the primary weapon of an emirate program known as Karma, run by DarkMater, an organization that operated as a private company but actually operated as a de facto spy agency in the UAE.

Reuters reported the existence of action in 2019 and the exploitation of iMessage. But on Tuesday, the United Arab Emirates fined three former U.S. intelligence and military personnel কাজ 1.68 million for operating without a license as a hired hacker. These activities included purchasing equipment for the account and then running a hacking campaign funded by the UAE.

U.S. court documents state that these works were developed and sold by American companies but did not name the hacking companies. The role of Acuvent has not yet been announced.

Brian Vernadran, assistant director of the FBI’s cyber division, said in a statement: “This is a clear message to anyone, including former U.S. government employees, who thought of using cyberspace to gain export-controlled information for the benefit of foreign governments or foreign commercial companies রয়েছে there are risks and consequences.”

Prolific Exploitation Developer

Despite the UAE being considered a close ally of the United States, Dark Matter has been linked to cyber attacks against various US targets, according to court documents and whistleblowers.

With American partnerships, expertise, and money, Darkmatter developed the UAE’s offensive hacking capabilities over several years, from almost anything to a terrifying and active operation. The group has spent heavily on recruiting American and Western hackers and sometimes conducting cyber operations in the country.

At the time of the sale, Aquant was a research and development lab based in Denver, Colorado, specialized in and selling iOS Exploits.

“The FBI will fully investigate individuals and companies that benefit from illegal criminal cyber activity. This is a clear message to anyone … there is a risk, and there will be consequences. ”

Brandon Vorndran, FBI

A decade ago, Aquant established a reputation as a broad-based exploit developer, working with American military contractors and selling bugs to government customers. In an industry that usually values ​​a code of silence, companies occasionally draw public attention.

“Aquant represents a represents upward in cybersecurity: an evolving market,” journalist David Kushner wrote in a 2013 profile of the company at Rolling Stone. It was the kind of company, he said, “capable of creating custom software that could access external systems and collect intelligence or even shut down a server for which they could pay up to 1 million.”

Following the continuation of Optive Merger and acquisitions, hacking has largely emerged from the industry, but Aquant’s alumni network is strong – and still working on exploitation. Two high-profile employees go to the cofound of an iPhone hacking company called GraphShift, which is known for its ability to unlock devices.

The MIT Technology Review found that Aquant sold hacking exploits to multiple customers in both the government and private sector, including the United States and its allies – and that the exact iMessage exploits were sold to multiple customers at the same time.

iMessage error

Among the messaging apps discovered and exploited in recent years, iMessage Exploit is one of several complex bugs. The 2020 update to the iPhone’s operating system has been sent with a complete rebuild of iMessage Security to make it harder to spot.



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