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Egyptian presidential hopeful targeted by Predator spyware

by Norman Scott

Recent research by Google and the University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab has uncovered a previously unknown “zero-day” attack targeted at a prominent Egyptian opposition politician. The attack aimed to infect the politician’s phone with Predator spyware and prompted Apple to release a security update. Citizen Lab has said it has “high confidence” that the Egyptian government was responsible for the failed hacking attempt. Zero-day exploits are particularly dangerous and valuable as they take advantage of as-yet-undiscovered security gaps. Citizen Lab’s research suggests that the attacker used Sandvine’s PacketLogic program to redirect the politician’s browser. This is the first time Citizen Lab has seen a zero-day exploit delivered in this way.

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