C: Hey, what’s this Pegasus issue?
H: It’s a spyware used by those in power to surveil you without your knowledge.
C: Is it used for spying?
H: Yes and much more
C: Shouldn’t governments and intelligence agencies be allowed to surveil those who are a threat to nation?
H: Yes, they can. But there is a procedure to do that. And this is not spying, but hacking your phone which is illegal.
C: Explain how is this different from traditional spying/eavesdropping/tapping?
H: This spyware can not just eavesdrop by turning on your phone’s mic and camera(without you knowing) but it can read your texts, track your calls, collecting passwords, and much more. Once Password is out they can be maliciously used which could make you a potential criminal. This is what hacking can do to you.
C: How would I not know about something that happens on my phone?
H: It’s not an usual application that you download like other application. You must be really technically savvy to know that this is on your phone.
C: Even then, when I am not doing something wrong why should I be worried?
H : okay! If you have nothing to worry/hide, then why not let your neighbor stay in your home forever? If you have nothing to hide then why fear your neighbor. If you have nothing to hide, then pl share with me your phone’s password and email password for just an hour.
C: Hey, why should I? Somethings are private and I don’t like others knowing about them
H: Exactly! It’s the same reason why you cannot be so stupid to say that you have nothing to hide and anyone can install any application on your phone without your knowledge.
C: What should I do now?
H: Spread awareness about this, so more people know about the seriousness of this issue.
C: What are the other consequences of this? (Assuming I am not being surveilled)
H: Once you know that you can be watched by others 24 hours a day, would you behave like your usual self? Studies have shown that(with somewhat mixed results) when an observer comes into the picture people behave differently which is most likely not their usual behavior. Your true nature is compromised
C: Even then, wouldn’t we all get used to it sooner or later? 🤣
H: I Wish 1000s of people surveil you forever
NOTE from the article linked below:
1. Only open links from known and trusted contacts and sources when using your device. Pegasus is deployed to Apple devices through an iMessage link. And this is is the same technique used by many cybercriminals for both malware distribution and less technical scams. The same advice applies to links sent via email or other messaging applications.
2. Make sure your device is updated with any relevant patches and upgrades. While having a standardized version of an operating system creates a stable base for attackers to target, it’s still your best defense.
3. If you use Android, don’t rely on notifications for new versions of the operating system. Check for the latest version yourself, as your device’s manufacturer may not be providing updates.
4. Although it may sound obvious, you should limit physical access to your phone. Do this by enabling pin, finger or face-locking on the device. The eSafety Commissioner’s website has a range of videos explaining how to configure your device securely.
5. Avoid public and free WiFi services (including hotels), especially when accessing sensitive information. The use of a VPN is a good solution when you need to use such networks.
6. Encrypt your device data and enable remote-wipe features where available. If your device is lost or stolen, you will have some reassurance your data can remain safe.
This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.
Provided by The Conversation
Disclaimer : This is a simplified explainer. More Details can be found in Wikipedia link provided
Addition – 26th July : Added links to The Guardian explainer and Snowden’s comments on the scandal videos