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World How Jeff Bezos’ iPhone X Was Hacked

04:40  23 january  2020
04:40  23 january  2020 Source:   nytimes.com

Jeff Bezos and Lauren Sanchez hold hands during red carpet debut in India

  Jeff Bezos and Lauren Sanchez hold hands during red carpet debut in India It's already been an eventful trip to India for the entrepreneur. When Bezos touched down earlier this week he was welcomed by the government with a new antitrust case. On Wednesday, Bezos announced Amazon would invest $1 billion over the next five years to bring more than 10 million small and medium Indian businesses online. © Provided by Yahoo Entertainment US Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and Lauren Sanchez pose for photographs during a blue carpet event by Amazon Prime Video in Mumbai, India on January 16, 2020.

Jeff Bezos began a quest to find out who had hacked his iPhone after his private photos and texts appeared in The National Enquirer.Credit Joshua Roberts/Reuters. The hack also exposed how popular messaging platforms like WhatsApp have vulnerabilities that attackers can exploit.

Learn how Jeff Bezos ' phone was hacked and lead to the most expensive divorce in history. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos ’ smartphone was hacked by the Saudi Arabian government, said his security head If you’re an iPhone user, don’t jailbreak your gadget and avoid installing jailbroken apps.

SAN FRANCISCO — On the afternoon of May 1, 2018, Jeff Bezos received a message on WhatsApp from an account belonging to Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman.

Jeff Bezos wearing a suit and tie talking on a cell phone: Jeff Bezos began a quest to find out who had hacked his iPhone after his private photos and texts appeared in The National Enquirer.© Joshua Roberts/Reuters Jeff Bezos began a quest to find out who had hacked his iPhone after his private photos and texts appeared in The National Enquirer.

The two men had previously communicated using the messaging platform, but Mr. Bezos, Amazon’s chief executive, had not expected a message that day — let alone one with a video of Saudi and Swedish flags with Arabic text.

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Jeff Bezos' phone was hacked after message from Saudi crown prince, report says

  Jeff Bezos' phone was hacked after message from Saudi crown prince, report says The breach was likely triggered by an infected video file sent via WhatsApp. It's unclear what was taken from the Amazon CEO's phone.Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos at Fire Phone launch event in Seattle, 2014

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos had his iPhone hacked for months, enabling hackers to access his private data. Here's how the alleged hacking software "A 2019 forensic analysis of Mr. Bezos ' iPhone that assessed with 'medium to high confidence' that his phone was infiltrated on 1 May 2018 via an MP4

According to the allegations, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos ' phone was hacked using malicious software delivered in a WhatsApp message that came directly from The Saudis apparently targeted Bezos because he owns the Washington Post, which published work from Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi dissident.

The video, a file of more than 4.4 megabytes, was more than it appeared, according to a forensic analysis that Mr. Bezos commissioned and paid for to discover who had hacked his iPhone X. Hidden in that file was a separate bit of code that most likely implanted malware that gave attackers access to Mr. Bezos’ entire phone, including his photos and private communications.

Mr. Bezos has been on a singular quest to find out who penetrated the device since early 2019, when he said The National Enquirer’s parent company had threatened to release private photographs and texts, and the forensic study was part of that effort. Those pictures and messages showed Mr. Bezos, who was married at the time, with another woman, Lauren Sanchez. The analysis did not connect the hack to The Enquirer.

UN calls for 'immediate investigation' into alleged Saudi crown prince involvement in Bezos phone hack

  UN calls for 'immediate investigation' into alleged Saudi crown prince involvement in Bezos phone hack The UN has called for an immediate investigation into the "possible involvement" of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in the hacking of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos' iPhone in 2018, UN experts said in a statement Wednesday. Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in the hacking of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos' iPhone in 2018, UN experts said in a statement Wednesday.

[+] Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos attend an event marking the one-year anniversary of the assassination of Saudi dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi If Saudi Arabia ordered any kind of hack of Bezos ’ device, it would indeed be absurd—absurdly dangerous, with ramifications for any person of

Jeff Bezos ' phone was allegedly hacked by the Crown Prince of Saudi ArabiaCredit: Getty Images - Getty. Yet as absurd as they sound, those are the bizarre ­accusations swirling around Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman (known as MBS) — yesterday

The forensic report on Mr. Bezos’ phone was at the heart of a United Nations statement on Wednesday raising concerns about Prince Mohammed. The analysis essentially accused the Saudi prince of using malware created by a private cybersecurity company to spy on and to intimidate Mr. Bezos, who also owns The Washington Post. At the time of the hack, Jamal Khashoggi, a dissident Saudi writer, was employed at The Post, which has published coverage critical of the Saudi government. Mr. Khashoggi was killed in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in late 2018.

a screenshot of a cell phone: The WhatsApp message that contained a video file sent to Mr. Bezos from the account of Prince Mohammed. The file contained malware, investigators said in a forensic analysis.© via FTI The WhatsApp message that contained a video file sent to Mr. Bezos from the account of Prince Mohammed. The file contained malware, investigators said in a forensic analysis.

Many technical mysteries remain about the infiltration of Mr. Bezos’ phone, including what type of malware was used. The forensic report did not detail whether Mr. Bezos had opened the file that was sent to him via Crown Prince Mohammed’s WhatsApp account. Cybersecurity experts said some malware did not require anyone to click on the file for it to install on a phone.

How Jeff Bezos was reportedly hacked: Could you be next?

  How Jeff Bezos was reportedly hacked: Could you be next? Smartphone hacks take many forms, but there some things you can do to thwart smartphone hacking attempts. How to keep hackers out your smartphoneBe sure to only install official updates. Last July, millions of Android phones were reportedly infected with malware through a fake Samsung app. Use secure passwords. Ring security cameras were recently hacked and short, easy-to-guess passwords may have been to blame. Two-factor authentication is also a good idea. Run anti-virus software on your smartphone.

The Jeff Bezos hack could happen to anyone. And that’s something to keep in mind even if you aren’t a billionaire. How Jeff Bezos allegedly got hacked , explained. First reported by the Guardian and the Financial Times, the investigation found that an iPhone X belonging to Bezos was hacked

Bezo ’s team also told the Guardian that they found “high confidence” that the Saudis were the ones to leak the information that Bezos was having an affair, which landed the tech Digital Trends reached out to Amazon and WhatsApp for comment on the hack . We will update this story once we hear back.

The details of the hack could not be independently verified by The New York Times. Mr. Bezos has been pushing a theory of Saudi involvement with the threats from The Enquirer, without providing proof, since early 2019. The Enquirer’s parent company has said Ms. Sanchez’s brother, Michael, was the sole source of the texts and intimate photos it acquired.

The Saudi Embassy in Washington has said that accusations that the kingdom was involved in hacking Mr. Bezos’ phone were “absurd.

The report’s conclusions renew questions about the shadowy world of private hackers for hire. For the right client, or the right sum, such hackers apparently infiltrated the phone of one of the world’s wealthiest and most powerful men. The report did not say which private cybersecurity company was used, but suggested that the Tel Aviv-based NSO Group and Milan-based Hacking Team had the capabilities for such an attack.

a person in a white shirt: A text sent to Mr. Bezos from Prince Mohammed’s WhatsApp account included a photo of a woman who resembled Lauren Sanchez, who Mr. Bezos was seeing.© via FTI Cybersecurity A text sent to Mr. Bezos from Prince Mohammed’s WhatsApp account included a photo of a woman who resembled Lauren Sanchez, who Mr. Bezos was seeing.

The hack also exposed how popular messaging platforms like WhatsApp have vulnerabilities that attackers can exploit. In October, WhatsApp sued the NSO Group in federal court, claiming that NSO’s spy technology was used on its service to target journalists and human rights activists. WhatsApp, which is owned by Facebook, has patched the flaw that the malware used.

Should You Reconsider Using WhatsApp After the Jeff Bezos Hack? Probably Not

  Should You Reconsider Using WhatsApp After the Jeff Bezos Hack? Probably Not Experts say everyday WhatsApp users probably don't need to worry about itInvestigators have “medium to high confidence” that Bezos’s device was compromised after the chief executive received a mysterious video file from Bin Salman, also known as “MBS,” via WhatsApp, according to a report from FTI Consulting, a firm that has investigated Bezos’ phone. After that file was received, Bezos’ phone started sending unusually large amounts of outbound data. Around six months later, Bin Salman sent Bezos messages that suggested he had knowledge of the CEO’s then-secret affair with Lauren Sanchez, details of which became public in January of last year.

Cybersecurity experts hired by Jeff Bezos to investigate the leaks after details of an affair were leaked to the media also reported similar findings The Guardian published a bombshell report on Tuesday: That Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos ' phone was hacked by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Jeff Bezos - WhatsApp hacked messages - MBS. A team of digital forensic experts hired by Mr Bezos claimed last year that Saudi Arabia appeared to have The message arrived as the Amazon executive was secretly discussing a divorce with his wife, MacKenzie, and how they would split his 0 billion

“This case really highlights the threats that are posed by a lawless and unaccountable private surveillance industry,” said David Kaye, the United Nations special rapporteur who was a co-author of Wednesday’s statement. “The companies who are creating these tools are extremely crafty and aggressive, and it’s a cat-and-mouse game at this point.”

NSO said it was not involved in any hack of Mr. Bezos’ phone. Hacking Team did not respond to a request for comment. WhatsApp declined to comment, as did FTI Consulting, the company that Mr. Bezos’ security team hired to examine his phone and that wrote the forensic analysis. Amazon declined to comment on behalf of Mr. Bezos.

a close up of a piece of paper: Some of the texts that Mr. Bezos exchanged with Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, on WhatsApp.© via FTI Some of the texts that Mr. Bezos exchanged with Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, on WhatsApp.

Malware that was created for the explicit purpose of prying into private online communications, also known as spyware, has become a $1 billion industry. While companies like the NSO Group and Hacking Team have been accused of deploying their spyware with governments to monitor dissidents and others, smaller companies also sell simpler versions of the software for as little as $10, allowing people to snoop on their spouses or children.

Ron Deibert, the director of Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto, which was not involved in the Bezos investigation, said the Amazon chief’s situation was “a reminder that the proliferation of commercial spyware is a global security problem for all sectors, from government and businesses to civil society.”

Should You Reconsider Using WhatsApp After the Jeff Bezos Hack? Probably Not

  Should You Reconsider Using WhatsApp After the Jeff Bezos Hack? Probably Not Experts say everyday WhatsApp users probably don't need to worry about itInvestigators have “medium to high confidence” that Bezos’s device was compromised after the chief executive received a mysterious video file from Bin Salman, also known as “MBS,” via WhatsApp, according to a report from FTI Consulting, a firm that has investigated Bezos’ phone. After that file was received, Bezos’ phone started sending unusually large amounts of outbound data. Around six months later, Bin Salman sent Bezos messages that suggested he had knowledge of the CEO’s then-secret affair with Lauren Sanchez, details of which became public in January of last year.

In brief: Amazon boss and world’s richest man Jeff Bezos reportedly had his phone hacked in 2018 via a WhatsApp message sent from the account of According to the Guardian’s sources, Bezos and the crown prince had been having a friendly exchange over WhatsApp before the unsolicited file was sent.

The United Nations is joining the chorus of those concerned about allegations Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was involved in hacking Jeff Bezos '

Over the years that he has run Amazon, Mr. Bezos has largely kept private. That changed when The National Enquirer published photos and messages last year between him and Ms. Sanchez, a TV anchor. Mr. Bezos and his wife, MacKenzie Bezos, later got a divorce.

On Feb. 7, 2019, Mr. Bezos went public with his claims. In a post on Medium, he accused The Enquirer of trying to blackmail him with his own text messages and photos and said he had asked Gavin de Becker, a private investigator, to determine how his phone had been hacked.

Ten days later, Mr. de Becker was advised by a “leading intelligence expert” to conduct a forensic analysis of Mr. Bezos’ iPhone and to look for Saudi fingerprints in the hack, according to notes in the report. The report did not identify the intelligence expert who reached out to Mr. de Becker.

Mr. de Becker, who declined to comment, hired FTI Consulting on Feb. 24, 2019, to examine Mr. Bezos’ phone. FTI was initially asked to look into several text messages that Mr. Bezos had received from the WhatsApp account of the Saudi prince. In mid-May 2019, Mr. Bezos handed over his iPhone X and asked FTI to run a full analysis on it, according to the report.

FTI zeroed in on an April 2018 dinner in which Prince Mohammed and Mr. Bezos had exchanged phone numbers in Los Angeles. After that, FTI found, the WhatsApp account of the prince initiated contact with Mr. Bezos repeatedly and without prompting.

The May 2018 message that contained the innocuous-seeming video file, with a tiny 14-byte chunk of malicious code, came out of the blue, according to the report and additional notes obtained by The New York Times. In the 24 hours after it was sent, Mr. Bezos’ iPhone began sending large amounts of data, which increased approximately 29,000 percent over his normal data usage.

WSJ: Prosecutors obtain evidence linking leaked Bezos texts to girlfriend's family member

  WSJ: Prosecutors obtain evidence linking leaked Bezos texts to girlfriend's family member Federal prosecutors have reportedly obtained evidence linking leaked text messages from Amazon founder Jeff Bezos to his girlfriend's brother. The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that prosecutors now have evidence indicating that Bezos's girlfriend, Lauren Sanchez, gave the text messages to her brother, Michael Sanchez, which he then sold for hundreds of thousands of dollars to the National Enquirer. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.

the hacking of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos ' iPhone , experts in the United Nations have urged, while details of the report show how the attack stemming The UN believes the timing and circumstances of the hacking and surveillance of Bezos "also strengthen support for further investigation by US and

A UN report links the attack on Jeff Bezos 's iPhone X directly to Saudi Arabian crown prince Mohammed bin Salman. That such a simple, elegant attack could snag Jeff Bezos underscores just how at-risk Trump has been . It’s not clear what other information the hack may have gleaned about

In the additional notes to the report, investigators said several phone apps were being used during the time that data was leaving the phone. Those included the Safari web browser and the Apple Mail program, both of which Mr. Bezos did not appear to be using heavily himself. Mr. Bezos did not have iCloud backup enabled on the phone, the notes added, which would have also explained large amounts of data leaving the phone.

Messages sent by Prince Mohammed’s WhatsApp account starting in late 2018 soon began to suggest that the sender had intimate knowledge of Mr. Bezos’ private life. On Nov. 8, 2018, the report said, Mr. Bezos received a message from the account that included a photo of a woman resembling Ms. Sanchez.

The photo was captioned, “Arguing with a woman is like reading the software license agreement. In the end you have to ignore everything and click I agree.”

At the time, Mr. Bezos and his wife were discussing divorce, which would have been apparent to anyone reading his text messages.

In mid-February 2019, Mr. Bezos held a series of phone calls with his security team about the Saudis’ alleged online campaign against him, the report said. Two days later, Mr. Bezos received a message from Prince Mohammed’s WhatsApp account that read, in part, “there is nothing against you or Amazon from me or Saudi Arabia.”

The report listed spyware known as Pegasus, developed by the NSO Group, and spyware called Galileo, developed by Hacking Team, as the two most likely tools used to carry out the attack. The report added that Saud al-Qahtani, a close adviser of Prince Mohammed, owned a 20 percent stake in Hacking Team.

The FTI report was not definitive about the hack, but said it had “medium to high confidence” that the message from the prince’s WhatsApp account was the culprit. In notes to the report, FTI said it was still attempting a more thorough analysis of the iPhone, including by jailbreaking it, or bypassing Apple’s control system on the phone.

Some cybersecurity experts said more information about the hack was needed to verify the report’s conclusions. Bill Marczak, a cyber expert at Citizen Lab, said in a blog post on Wednesday that technology existed for decrypting the WhatsApp messages to see more detail about the video file that was sent.

Agnes Callamard, the United Nations special rapporteur who also co-wrote Wednesday’s statement, said the episode was “a wake-up call to the international community as a whole that we are facing a technology that is very difficult to track, extremely powerful and effective, and that is completely unregulated.”

She said Mr. Bezos’ experience should sound alarms because even with his wealth and resources, it took months of investigation by specialists to figure out what had happened — a luxury few others have.

“It basically means that we are all extremely vulnerable,” she said.

Ben Hubbard contributed reporting from Beirut, and Karen Weise from Seattle.

Jeff Bezos' leaked text messages may have come from his girlfriend .
When Jeff Bezos accused the National Enquirer of trying to blackmail him with leaked text messages, this raised a question: how did those messages escape Bezos' phone? Apparently, they might have come from Bezos' girlfriend Lauren Sanchez. Wall Street Journal and New York Times sources say that federal prosecutors have evidence Sanchez sent the messages to her brother Michael, who turned around and sold them to the Enquirer. There's no mentionEnquirer owner American Media maintained in a statement that Michael Sanchez provided "all materials," and rejected longstanding assertions that Saudi Arabia was involved.

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