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US blaming China for Microsoft hack is an obvious deflection from the Pegasus spyware scandal

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On Monday, the United States, the United Kingdom, and the European Union accused China of being behind a hack of Microsoft’s servers in March.

Without evidence, the allies said Beijing had been involved in “malicious cyber activity,” although they stopped short of implementing any sanctions. China responded by calling the US the largest instigator of cyberattacks in the world.

The move, led by the US, might be described as deliberately and conveniently timed political theatre, as it coincidentally knocked another emerging cyber scandal out of the headlines.

Just hours before this announcement, a number of newspapers, including The Guardian, had published evidence that highly advanced Israeli spyware called Pegasus – which can infect smartphones and intercept messages, emails, and other communications – had in fact been used on an industrial scale to target activists, journalists, and lawyers around the world.

The program is named Pegasus because it can be installed through the air without needing physical access to the target’s phone. Victims named so far include up to 200 people, many of whom are prominent reporters working for the likes of CNN, the New York Times, and Al Jazeera. The software has been employed by a host of countries, including in Narendra Modi’s India, where it was used to........

© RT.com

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