NSO’s Spyware Abuse Exposed Years Ago
DC bigwigs signed up as advisers anyway
Abuse of the spyware firm NSO Group’s cell phone surveillance technology was exposed as long as five years ago, but the Israeli-based firm was still able to enlist influential officials from both Republican and Democratic administrations and prestigious D.C. law firms as lobbyists and advisers, a SpyTalk review has found.
In an eye-opening story on Monday, “How Washington power brokers gained from NSO’s spyware ambitions,” Washington Post reporter Drew Harwell identified several past and present recipients of NSO Group’s largess, including two former Homeland Security department secretaries, Tom Ridge and Jeh Johnson; Michael Flynn, the disgraced former Trump White House national security adviser; and Ron Rosenstein, Trump’s deputy attorney general from 2017 to 2019, “during which he decried the ‘lawless’ attack on [Saudi exile dissident Jamal] Khashoggi and oversaw the FBI.”
Khashoggi was murdered and his corpse dismembered in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2, 2018, after wh…