The national cyber-security agency of France, ANSSI has confirmed the presence of Pegasus spyware on the phones of two French investigative journalists. It is the first government agency in the world to confirm the Pegasus hack.
The online investigative journal employing the victims, Mediapart said that the analysis carried out by ANSSI has corroborated the findings published by Amnesty International's Security Lab and 17 international media outlets that exposed the global snooping scandal, reported NDTV.
The Pegasus infection's modalities, dates, and duration has been found to align with the conclusions of the Pegasus Project. Mediapart is one of the 17 media organisations that published, Pegasus project, the list of 50,000 people who allegedly have been targeted by the Israeli spyware. The phones may have been successfully hacked or attempted to be hacked.
The Pegasus spyware allows the hacker to extract messages, record calls, and activate microphones without the knowledge of the phone's owner. The NSO Group, which owns Pegasus, has declared that they only sell the spyware to governments and government agencies. The company stated that the spyware is designed to snoop and prevent criminal and terrorist activities.
The Wire, the Indian media firm among the 17 international media to work on the Pegasus project, has claimed 300 Indian citizen's number is on the list, and it includes opposition leaders, businessmen, journalists, and human rights activists.
The controversy has led to several allegations against the Modi government. The Centre has called the Pegasus report "sensational" and rejected the demands for a probe into the matter.