Info-tech

Worried about Pegasus spyware? This bot can help you test suspicious URL

K V Kurmanath Hyderabad | Updated on July 22, 2021

Activists launch bot scans suspicious links

Losing sleep over reports of Pegasus spyware being stealthily deployed in smart phones for alleged snooping by governments?

Activists of Free Software Movement of India have developed a preliminary scan that helps you scan the URL of a website or a suspicious link. After vetting, the bot will tell you whether the URL in question is linked to the known Pegasus spyware.

“The spyware is difficult to be detected. Once it enters the device, it takes control over it. It can read messages, listen to conversations on multiple calling apps and get access to cameras,” Kiran Chandra, General Secretary of FSMI, told BusinessLine.

With reports of phones of scores of activists, journalists, politicians and intellectuals were infected with the Pegasus spyware, the FSMI has launched a bot on its Telegram account.

How-to

All one needs to do is copy-paste a suspicious link as a message in the Telegram bot. It will then get checked against the list of known links associated with Pegasus.

“It is a first level scan. It can scan the links that are available in the phone. If a malicious message was clicked once and later deleted, this bot can’t find it. Perhaps, we might higher levels of scans in the future,” he said.

“The Amnesty and Forbidden Stories project revealed that several governments across the world are using NSO's Pegasus spyware, which is difficult to detect and takes complete control of devices,” he said.

Published on July 22, 2021

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