New Delhi: Amnesty International on Thursday reiterated its stance and said that the findings of the Pegasus Project and said that the data was “irrefutably linked” to the potential targets of the spyware. It also rejected reports which claimed that Amnesty International never said that the list was of those users who were targeted by the spyware.
“Amnesty International categorically stands by the findings of the Pegasus Project, and that the data is irrefutably linked to potential targets of NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware,” Amnesty International said in a statement.
“The false rumours being pushed on social media are intended to distract from the widespread unlawful targeting of journalists, activists, and others that the Pegasus Project has revealed,” it added.
After the release of investigative reports by several media organisations which said that the spyware was used to snoop on journalists, human rights activists, the NSO Group which is the developer of Pegasus had threatened to file a lawsuit.
“The report by Forbidden Stories is full of wrong assumptions and uncorroborated theories that raise serious doubts about the reliability and interests of the sources. It seems like the “unidentified sources” have supplied information that has no factual basis and is far from reality,” the company had said in a statement.
“In fact, these allegations are so outrageous and far from reality that NSO is considering a defamation lawsuit,” they added.
On July 18, an investigation by The Wire and several other international media organisations had claimed that the phone numbers of Indian journalists were hacked by the Pegasus software.
According to the Wire, some of the journalists on the surveillance list were Siddharth Varadarajan and MK Venu, founding editors of The Wire Hindustan Times, including executive editor Shishir Gupta, India Today’s defence correspondent Sandeep Unnithan, and Manoj Gupta investigation and security affairs correspondent at TV 18.