Israeli Spyware Vendor QuaDream to Shut Down Following Citizen Lab and Microsoft Expose

Technology

Apr 17, 2023Ravie LakshmananSurveillance / Privacy

Israeli spyware vendor QuaDream is allegedly shutting down its operations in the coming days, less than a week after its hacking toolset was exposed by Citizen Lab and Microsoft.

The development was reported by the Israeli business newspaper Calcalist, citing unnamed sources, adding the company “hasn’t been fully active for a while” and that it “has been in a difficult situation for several months.”

The company’s board of directors are looking to sell off its intellectual property, the report further added.

News of the purported shutdown comes as the firm’s spyware framework – dubbed REIGN – was outed as having been used against journalists, political opposition figures, and NGO workers across North America, Central Asia, Southeast Asia, Europe, and the Middle East.

Microsoft described REIGN as a “suite of exploits, malware, and infrastructure designed to exfiltrate data from mobile devices.”

The attacks entailed the exploitation of a now-patched flaw in iOS to deploy sophisticated surveillanceware capable of surreptitiously gathering sensitive information, including audio, pictures, passwords, files, and locations.

Apple told The Hacker News last week that there was no indication to suggest that the exploit, codenamed ENDOFDAYS, has been put to use since the company released iOS 14.4.2 in March 2021.

QuaDream, like its Israeli counterparts NSO Group and Candiru, is a private-sector offensive actor (PSOA) that markets end-to-end hacking tools that can be utilized by its customers in running the operations.

UPCOMING WEBINAR

Master the Art of Dark Web Intelligence Gathering

Learn the art of extracting threat intelligence from the dark web – Join this expert-led webinar!

Save My Seat!

While the company has largely managed to stay under the shadows, Haaretz reported in June 2021 that its spyware technology was sold to Saudi Arabia to carry out zero-click attacks against targets of interest.

Then last year, Reuters revealed that QuaDream had independently developed an exploit to break into iPhones that’s comparable to the one provided by NSO Group by leveraging a flaw in iMessage. Apple addressed the vulnerability in September 2021.

Found this article interesting? Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn to read more exclusive content we post.

Products You May Like

Articles You May Like

Boeing CEO Calhoun heads to Senate hours after new whistleblower claims
Hugh Jackman Starring in ‘Three Bags Full: A Sheep Detective Movie’
‘Bridgerton’ Binge Is Over? These 6 Queer Romance Books Might Help
Tony Awards 2024: The Complete Winners List
Best Richard Roundtree Movies | Moviefone