Activist Rona Wilson's phone infected with Pegasus spyware, says new forensic analysis

By PTI

MUMBAI: Activist Rona Wilson’s smartphone was infiltrated using NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware a year before his arrest in the Elgar Parishad case, according to new forensic analysis.

Wilson, a prisoners’ rights activist and academic, was a victim of “surveillance and incriminating document delivery” for close to a year before his arrest in June 2018, according to the analysis.

Digital forensics firm Arsenal Consulting said Wilson’s Apple phone was not just selected for surveillance by a client of Israel’s NSO Group but was also successfully compromised on many occasions.

The analysis showed that two backups of the iPhone 6s belonging to Wilson had digital traces showing infection by the Pegasus surveillance tool, which its developer, the Israeli cybersecurity firm NSO Group, has said has been licensed only to government agencies.

The Indian government has neither confirmed nor denied that it is an NSO Group client.

V Suresh, National General Secretary of People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) said the new findings show compelling evidence in the case.

“Now there is compelling evidence. We are exploring all legal possibilities to validate these findings based on the new type of electronic evidence,” Suresh told PTI.