Amnesty International, which played a crucial role in unearthing NSO’s spyware Pegasus keeping a watch on world’s top political leaders, journalists etc, has now released a tool that can help users know if their phone was also under the radar of Pegasus. Amnesty International has also released a set of instructions following which users can confirm if their device was also a potential target of the spyware. The tool can be used by backing up a personal device to a separate computer and running a check on the device’s backup on the computer.
How to run the tool?
1. The tool released by Amnesty International is a command line or terminal line tool which essentially means that the person using it must have a little technical knowhow or utter patience that can guide her through.
2. Amnesty International has also made it clear that the tool can be used more efficiently on iOS devices in comparison to the Android devices. Though even the Android users can use the tool, the backup of an Android device will be limited. However, the backup will identify the malicious messages and APKs.
3. For iPhone, the process will begin by making an encrypted backup either by using iTunes or Finder on a Mac or personal computer. The user will then need to locate the backup for which Apple provides instructions.
4. After securely making a backup of the phone, the user will need to download Amnesty’s mvt program and install it on the device.
5. If the backup has been made on a Mac, the user will need to install Xcode which is to be downloaded from the App store. The user will need to download and install Python3 before running mvt. Python3 can be downloaded by using a program called Homebrew which is also available on Terminal. This way the tool released by Amnesty International can be run on an iOS device.