The attack turns an iPhone into the perfect surveillance device. It comes via an invisible text message and secretly gives the attacker access to, among other things, chat messages, the location of the device, the stored photos and the microphone. Whoever is on the other end can hear everything being said near the infected device.
People were eavesdropped on like this for months, maybe even years. Not just any people, but employees of Kaspersky, a company that sells anti-virus software to private individuals and protects corporations from cyber attacks. Managers, researchers working on sensitive topics. A disaster. And yet Boris Larin can hardly hide his euphoria. “Imagine discovering a sophisticated cyberattack that targets your colleagues’ iPhones and has incredible capabilities,” he says. For him, the whole thing is the success story of his career.