Apple warns Thai workers about possible spying on their iPhones


BANGKOK: Apple Inc. issued alert messages on Wednesday to at least six activists and researchers who have been critical of Thailand’s government, warning that their iPhones had been targeted by “state-sponsored attackers”, activists said. And according to an alert reviewed by Reuters.

Apple and Thailand’s digital ministry did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Prajak Kongkirati, a political scientist at Bangkok’s Thammasat University, said he had received two emails from Apple believed to have targeted his iPhone and iCloud accounts, as well as “threat information” on his Apple account. “It was also given.

Researcher Sarini Achannuntakul of legal watchdog group iLaw and Thai activist Yingchip Atchanont said they had received similar emails, while a rapper, a political activist and a politician opposing the government shared screenshots of the same email on their social media accounts. Posted separately.

Everyone is considered critical of the Thai government.

The messages warned that “if your device is tampered with by a state-sponsored attacker, they may be able to remotely access your sensitive data, communications, or even your camera and microphone.” Huh.”

Two political activists in Ghana, an opposition politician in Uganda, as well as a dozen journalists from Salvadoran media reported later on Wednesday that they had received similar warning messages from Apple, as did a social media post reviewed by Reuters. is according to.

Apple on Tuesday filed a lawsuit against Israeli cyber firm NSO Group and its parent company OSY Technologies for alleged surveillance of US Apple users and targeting them with its Pegasus spyware.

In a statement on Tuesday, Apple said the NSO group had created a “state-sponsored surveillance technology” that was aimed at “a very small number of users.”

It was not immediately clear in Apple’s alert on Wednesday whether the company believed Thais were being targeted by Pegasus.

Internet security monitoring group Citizen Lab identified a Pegasus spyware operator operating within Thailand in 2018.

Thailand’s government still led by the architects of the 2014 coup, who remained in power after the 2019 election, their rivals say was stacked in favor of the military.

The leader of the coup, Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, has denied allegations that the military changed the rules to ensure it remained under control. They have faced months of anti-government protests.

The government has also been criticized for its management, while simultaneously demanding greater democracy. coronavirus Epidemics and the economy.

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