WhatsApp said it has proof that Israeli-based NSO Group was behind a hack of its app secured in May.
An organisation called Citizen’s Lab uncovered a bug in the mobile messaging application that allowed people infect the application with a spyware called Pegasus through unsolicited video calls.
In an opinion piece on Washington Post, WhatsApp’s Head, Will Cathcart, said the company intends to sue the firm for a breach that affected 1,400 journalists and human rights activists.
He said, “Now, we are seeking to hold NSO accountable under United States laws including the US Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.
“While their attack was highly sophisticated, their attempts to cover their tracks were not entirely successful.”
NSO Group denied the accusations in May and reinstated that view now, saying all it did was sell applications to governments, who wanted it.
The back story given by experts however, is that the malicious software was sold to repressive governments, who used it to attack dissenters.
“In the strongest possible terms, we dispute the allegations and will vigorously fight them,” NSO Group declared in a statement.
The company added that it takes action whenever one of its products are used for purposes other than fighting crime or terrorism.
Cathcart added, “WhatsApp will continue to do everything we can within our code, and within the courts of law to help protect the privacy and security of our users everywhere.”