Ben WoodsEurope Editor
Ben is a technology journalist with a specialism in mobile devices and a geeky love of mobile spectrum issues. Ben used to be a professional Ben is a technology journalist with a specialism in mobile devices and a geeky love of mobile spectrum issues. Ben used to be a professional online poker player. You can contact him via Twitter or on Google+.
WikiLeaks has today released copies of ‘weaponized malware’ used by various governments around the world to snoop on individuals.
The FinFisher software is no stranger to controversy – it’s marketed as surveillance software, but propogates and gains access to victim’s systems using common malware techniques. As well as compromising desktop computers, it’s also used to spy on mobile communications from Android, iOS and BlackBerry devices too.
“FinFisher continues to operate brazenly from Germany selling weaponised surveillance malware to some of the most abusive regimes in the world. The Merkel government pretends to be concerned about privacy, but its actions speak otherwise,” WikiLeaks Editor-in-Chief Julian Assange said in a statement.
Releasing the software is all part of the organization’s push to shed light on global surveillance, although making the software freely available to anyone around the world at the click of a button does present risks of its own, as noted in the release. The ultimate aim is to help people build tools that protect against the software and that help track down its command and control centers, Assange said.
The software is produced by a German company that, until late last year, was part of UK-based Gamma Group International. According to WikiLeaks, it is mostly used against “journalists, activists and political dissidents”.
➤ SpyFiles 4 [WikiLeaks]
Image credit: Getty Images
Get the TNW newsletter
Get the most important tech news in your inbox each week.