Pegasus Infection Found On Indian Journalists’ Phones After Apple Alert: Amnesty International

Syllabus: GS-III.

Subject: Security

Topic: Basics of cyber security

Context: The founder editor of the wire news website Siddharth Varadarajan and another journalist in India were targeted with Pegasus.


  •  Pegasus, developed by NSO Group, is an invasive spyware infiltrating phones through exploit links, granting complete access.
  • NSO Group claims to sell exclusively to governments; the Indian government has not denied using Pegasus.
  • The spyware employs BLASTPAST, a zero-day exploit, exploiting unknown vulnerabilities without available patches.
  • Citizen’s Lab findings reveal Pegasus utilizes a chain of zero-day exploits, penetrating phone security without user consent.
  • In response, the Supreme Court appoints a technical committee to investigate allegations of Pegasus use in India.

Conclusion: However, Union Minister of State for Electronics and IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar denied the findings and termed it as “half facts, fully embellished”.

Concept: A “zero-day exploit” is a completely unknown vulnerability, about which even the software manufacturer is not aware, and there is, thus, no patch or fix available for it.

  • The specific exploit allegedly in use on the two devices is called BLASTPAST
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