Home GDPR #Privacy: Sir Nick Clegg criticised over WhatApp security
GDPR - January 24, 2020

#Privacy: Sir Nick Clegg criticised over WhatApp security

Facebook’s head of communications has been criticised for his response to Jeff Bezos’s phone hack. 

On Wednesday, news broke that the Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos had his mobile phone hacked in 2018 after receiving a WhatsApp message that had allegedly been sent from the prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed bin Salman.

The message is believed to have included a malicious file that exfiltrated large amounts of data from Bezos’s phone within hours. 

According to an analysis by UN special rapporteurs Agnes Callamard and David Kaye, “within hours of receipt of the MP4 video file from the Crown Prince’s account, massive and (for Bezos’ phone) unprecedented exfiltration of data from the phone began, increasing data egress suddenly by 29,156 per cent to 126 MB.”

The UN analysis added that the intrusion was likely undertaken through spyware product “identified in other Saudi surveillance cases, such as the NSO Group’s Pegasus-3 malware.”

The NSO Group has “unequivocally” denied the claims, and Saudi Arabia has denied responsibility. 

“Recent media reports that suggest the Kingdom is behind a hacking of Mr. Jeff Bezos’ phone are absurd,” the Saudi embassy in Washington tweeted Tuesday. “We call for an investigation on these claims so that we can have all the facts out.”

In an interview today with BBC Radio 4’s Today programme about the hack, Sir Nick Clegg, Facebook’s head of communications said: “It can’t have been anything when the message was sent in transit because that’s end-to-end encrypted on WhatsApp.”

“We’re as sure as you can be that the technology of end-to-end encryption cannot… be hacked into.”

Clegg’s comments has raised many criticisms from cyber-security researchers who pointed out that Clegg failed to acknowledge the many security flaws within WhatsApp that have previously been discovered

“Nobody tell Nick Clegg about how exploits work,” said cyber-security researcher Kevin Beaumont.

The post #Privacy: Sir Nick Clegg criticised over WhatApp security appeared first on PrivSec Report.


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