New Delhi: A plea has been filed in the Supreme Court by former RSS ideologue KN Govindacharya on Monday seeking a National Investigation Agency (NIA) investigation and an FIR against Facebook, WhatsApp, and NSO Group under provisions of Information Technology Act and Indian Penal Code for compromising public data of Indians, stated a report.
This petition has come in the wake of reports about WhatsApp’s revelation that some journalists, lawyers, diplomats, political dissidents, senior government officials and human rights activists were spied upon using a surveillance technology developed by Israel-based NSO Group, stated news agency ANI.
In a written letter to electronics and IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, Govindacharya was reported as having sought an NIA probe against WhatsApp, its owner Facebook, NSO Group Technologies and Q Cyber Technologies for violating the right to privacy of Indians.
On October 31, WhatsApp had confirmed that an Israeli surveillance firm NSO Group had developed the spyware technology ‘Pegasus’ that allegedly helped the spies of unnamed entities to hack into the phones of Indian journalists and human rights activists, stated news agency PTI.
As per reports, an estimated 1,400 users were targeted upon by the spies. Investigations also revealed that the spies had targeted users from across four continents. Taking stock of the sensitive situation, the Facebook-owned company WhatsApp announced its decision to sue the alleged NSO Group.
In May this year, WhatsApp claimed to have to stopped a highly sophisticated cyberattack that exploited its video calling system to send malware to its users. The mobile messaging giant said it had sent a special WhatsApp message to approximately 1,400 users that it has “reason to believe were impacted by this attack to directly inform them about what happened”.