‘Zero-click’ hacks are growing in popularity. There’s practically no way to stop them


Once the preserve of a few intelligence agencies, the technology needed for zero-click hacks is now being sold to governments by a small number of companies, the most prominent of which is Israel’s NSO Group. — AFP

As a journalist working for the Arab news network Alaraby, Rania Dridi said she’s taken precautions to avoid being targeted by hackers, keeping an eye out for suspicious messages and avoiding clicking on links or opening attachments from people she doesn’t know.

Dridi’s phone got compromised anyway with what’s called a “zero-click” attack, which allows a hacker to break into a phone or computer even if its user doesn’t open a malicious link or attachment. Hackers instead exploit a series of security flaws in operating systems – such as Apple Inc’s iOS or Google’s Android – to breach a device without having to dupe their victim into taking any action. Once inside, they can install spyware capable of stealing data, listening in on calls and tracking the user’s location.

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