Pegasus Spyware Controversy !!
'Pegasus spyware' is not a new swing in the town. It is existing since 2010 and has been developed by an Israeli company called the 'NSO' group who claimed that this spyware has been created with the aim of spying on terrorist activities by sitting deep down in their mobile systems without their know-how. The company also used to claim that this spyware shall aid in controlling drug trafficking, human trafficking & situations of life and death etc. where this spyware would help in letting the surveillance company know what the user really wants or is most probably thinking about.
Recently the 'Pegasus spyware' was in the news since it was claimed that this spyware was used to spy on several individuals around the world including several journalists, politicians, activists etc. Should these strata of individuals be considered as 'terrorists'? No obviously. The motive behind installing the 'Pegasus spyware' in the smartphones of such individuals was clear and it's that the company is letting its clients track down the information usage of their 'host', what are they discussing about, who are they talking to, etc.
If you compare the technological access of Israel with the world, you will know that the country has really advanced in the domain. They have their own 'cyber army' that are well qualified to cyber-attack or to counter any cyber attack. Israel definitely knew in advance that 'data' is going to be the next big thing in the near future. They probably knew that in the future, all the cross-country wars shall be internet-based (take the Colonial Pipeline Co. case who were recently ransomware attacked by a hacker group called 'R-Evil' and this attack resulted in the increased petrol prices in the U.S) and it's why Israel started focusing on its tech infrastructure from very early days when maybe most of the countries around the world were luring about gaining nuclear power.
Recently the France Media Group 'Forbidden Stories' has revealed that this NSO Group has a surveillance record of more than 50,000 influential people around the world which includes 155 people from India alone. These 155 people from India include politicians, journalists and similar substantial people. Tracking the mobile phones of the politicians clearly indicates that the rivalry party would have paid huge amounts to the NSO group and requested them to track their rivals.
One thing that you should know about this 'Pegasus spyware' is that there is a rare chance that this virus is there in your smartphone (unless you are a very influential person). The installation fee alone that the NSO group charges to install the spyware in the host cellphone is around 5 lakh U.S dollars (Rs. 4 Crore approximately) along with the maintenance fee of around 1 lakh U.S dollars. So in particular, this company will give you access to a dashboard where you can track all the activities of the host/view his personal files stored in the device and that too without even touching the smartphone of the host (they have the ability to hack it and install the 'Pegasus spyware' without even letting the host know about it).
Hence 'Pegasus' is a very costly software and it's not easy for a nominal user to get access to it. Also following the same methodology, you can guess that it's not possible that all the citizens of any country 'X' would be tracked and only the mobile phones of some selective individuals are on the radar by the company (American business magnate; Jeff Bezos was hacked in around 2018 with this spyware).
Almost everything nowadays is being facilitated with the aid of the internet. Be it education or railway or citizen identity etc. to name a few, which makes the database of any country very valuable which has long been understood by Israel and most of the countries are now gaining consciousness about the importance of data and the need for a data protection regime and related measures.