Apple's Investment in India at Risk: Government Uses Pegasus to Hack Journalists' iPhones, Company Exposes Them Publicly

Apple’s Investment in India at Risk: Government Uses Pegasus to Hack Journalists’ iPhones, Company Exposes Them Publicly

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Apple pone en riesgo su inversión en India: el gobierno usó Pegasus para hackear los iPhone de periodistas y la compañía los delata en público

Apple is one of the most prominent companies in the sector and a benchmark in the industry. In order to meet the high demand for iPhones, it had to leave China behind and focus on India as the new country in which to manufacture them, thus avoiding problems related to restrictions. However, before the transition to India was successfully completed, the company had already become entangled in problems. Apple warned journalists and politicians about government hackers attempting to hack iPhones, and India has not taken this well, with local authorities turning against the bitten apple company.

Ever since the United States imposed restrictions on China to prevent the sale of chips, many semiconductor and electronic product companies have been seeking alternative countries to continue their production. Companies such as AMD and Apple have opted for India, since doing so allowed them to maintain low costs while maintaining high productivity levels. The migration from China to India is not yet complete, and these companies are still in the process of setting up factories and mass production.

India does not believe in Apple’s warnings about iPhone hacking

Multi-million dollar investments in China have already occurred, and so it can be said that India may become the main iPhone manufacturing hub for Apple. However, not everything has gone smoothly, as in October, Apple warned opposition party politicians about Indian government hackers trying to infiltrate their iPhones. This had a rather severe political impact, leading to confrontations, especially with Apple itself.

The Indian government disagreed with these warnings and tried to discredit and pressure the company to deny them and suggest other alternatives. Representatives of Prime Minister Narendra Modi did everything they could to deflect suspicions that they had been carrying out attacks against their enemies, such as Indian journalists and digital rights groups. Not everyone has turned against Apple, though, as there is a group of believers in the Cupertino-based company who accuse Modi and Gautam Adani of having deceived and acted against the laws. A spokesperson for Adani denied that the Indian tycoon was involved in an attempt to hack iPhones, as Apple claimed.

Indian journalists were affected by the Pegasus spyware

The OCCRP, a non-profit organization that aims to defend journalists from criminals and the corrupt, was also criticized. In fact, The Post was criticized by India after stating that an attacker had infiltrated the mobile phone of Anand Mangnale, a journalist from the OCCRP, and installed Pegasus, a spyware that has been previously discussed in the news.

Although India criticizes Apple and other media outlets, the truth cannot be hidden. The Post, in collaboration with Amnesty International, has found more attacks on Indian journalists. The hacking of iPhones in India, which Apple initially reported, eventually proved true, with suspicions of these types of attacks using Pegasus dating back to June. Amnesty International warns that the use of spyware in India has not decreased and continues to pose a threat to opposition politicians. The story doesn’t end there, as officials from the Modi administration called the managing director of Apple India, Virat Bhatia, asking him to withdraw the warnings. Apple India took charge of warning through a public statement on its website about protection from state-sponsored attacks.

This raised alarms, and Apple India admitted that it had made a mistake and provided some clarifications. In addition, they asked Indian tech journalists to consider that Apple’s warnings “could be false alarms” and that these messages were not only sent to India but also to 150 countries worldwide. All of this has ended up causing problems for Apple, as it is in their best interest to maintain a good relationship with India, especially considering that they are allocating a significant portion of their production there.

The entry “Apple puts its investment in India at risk: the government used Pegasus to hack journalists’ iPhones and the company publicly exposes them” first appears on El Chapuzas Informático.

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