India uses Israeli Spyware
A collaborative investigation by The Washington Post, The Guardian, Le Monde and other media outlets revealed last week that an Israel based security tech firm called NSO supplied its Pegasus spyware to several countries that are allies of Israel, including India, who attempted to hack tens of thousands of smartphone numbers of activists, journalists, business executives and politicians around the world. The investigation reported Saudi Arabia, UAE, Morocco, Bahrain and some others to also included among NSO’s clients. The targeted number list includes high profile contacts such as murdered Saudi Journalist Jamal Khashoggi and Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan!
Pegasus is a highly invasive spyware tool that can switch on a target’s phone camera and microphone, as well as access data on the device (photos, emails, messages), effectively turning a phone into a pocket spy. It can be installed on a target’s phone by tempting and deceiving them in to clicking on a link via SMS or email. In many cases it can even be installed without the need to trick them into clicking anything, your phone can just be hacked through a simple phone call! India has primarily used it to spy on its ministers, government officials, judges, journalists, human rights activists, especially those who are critics of PM Modi’s Hindu fascist authoritarian rule. The list of Indian targets includes hundreds of Pakistani numbers and those of journalists from Indian Occupied Kashmir, a Muslim majority state under Indian army occupation similar to Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories.
Islam on Shayateen & Spying
The Quran warns us that satan and his devils spy on the believers to tempt and deceive them into a trap in order to harm them. The following ayah reminds us of Satan’s tempting Adam and Hawwa (alaihim us salaam) and once they were caught in his deceptive trap, he exposed all their privacy: (Al Quran 7:27) O children of Adam! Do not let Satan deceive you as he tempted your parents out of Paradise and caused their cover to be removed in order to expose their nakedness. Surely, he and his tribe (soldiers) watch you from where you cannot see them. We have made the devils (shayateen) allies of those who disbelieve.
Apart from the ability of shayateen to observe our actions from spiritual world, the ayah may also be a hint towards the ability of today’s shayateen to hack in to our lives and observe our private matters through technology. Satan’s tribe or soldiers includes evil jinn and humans. The term shayateen commonly called devils is not limited to the jinn but even humans who are evil are included in this term: (Al Quran 6:112) And so We have made for every prophet enemies--devilish humans and jinn—whispering to one another with elegant words of deception - The Prophet ﷺ was once asked, “Are there shayateen from among men?” - And he replied, “Yes, and they are eviler than the shayateen from among the al-jinn.” Hence, we can assume that the soldiers of satan are all those jinn and humans who collaborate in evil. To protect their evil interests, they oppose truth and justice and employ modern technology to spy and harm those who fight for truth and justice.
The spyware provided by Zionist Israel to assist Hindu India establish its hegemony in South Asia over Muslim territories is part of that moral alliance that Quran brings our attention to that (Al Quran 5:82) “…most hostile people against the believers are the Jews and the Idol Worshipers…” A Jewish alliance with Idol worshipers has not taken place in entire Islamic history since the Prophet’s time when Jews of Madinah allied with pagans of Makkah against the believers. It is only now that a similar alliance has reappeared after 1400 yrs in the shape of Israeli-Indian nexus! Hence, this ayah is one of the miracles of Quran.
Dajjal, a Jewish political leader, most likely a Zionist, is a major sign of the hour (end of times). He will have many advantages to his benefit that will assist him strengthen his rule, and modern technology is one of them. For instance Prophet Muhammad ﷺ mentioned "...He will be riding a donkey; the width between its ears will be forty cubits. He will say to the people: "I am your lord." (Musnad Ahmad) In another narration the Prophet ﷺ said "....like a cloud driven by the wind. He will come to the people and call them (to a false religion), and they will believe in him and respond to him. He will issue a command to the sky, and it will rain; and to the earth, and it will produce crops…” (Sahih Muslim 2937 a) Its quite evident that Dajjal’s “donkey” must be a reference to a modern aircraft, and the “forty cubits” distance between its “ears” a reference to the wings of the aircraft, quite wide apart from each other. His "command to the sky, and it will rain” is the now possibility to produce artificial rain and modify the weather conditions through cloud seeding practices. Hence we can imagine how dajjal and his devil soldiers from among humans will use technology to harm those who oppose him and his allies. Prophet Muhammad ﷺ also prophesied the technology of voice navigation GPS, (google) talking shoes and mobile phones as signs of the hour: “By the One in Whose Hand is my soul! The Hour will not be established until predators speak to people and until the tip of a man's whip and the straps on his sandal (shoes) speak to him, and his thigh informs him of what occurred with his family after him.” (Jami at-Tirmidhi 2181) The “tip of a man’s whip” and the “thigh informing” could be mobile devices, usually kept in thigh pockets, equipped with WatsApp and Skype that help chat with and see our family despite our absence from homes. So, we can imagine how human shayateen may hack these devices to also spy for dajjal. In the ahadith we are also informed that dajjal will have a spying system called al jassasah. In Sahih Muslim, jassasah is an agent of dajjal who could not be identified, the companions who saw him said his face was indistinguishable from his back. He spies and gathers sensitive information for dajjal. The term jassasah means ‘someone who searches for news and brings it’. Just as the "donkey" must be a symbolic reference to a modern aircraft, jassasah must be a symbolic reference to a sophisticated spying system. Dajjal will claim to know the unseen (al ghayb) and most likely use technology like spyware to learn and gather information on private affairs of masses. His access to sensitive information will allow him to falsely claim knowledge of al ghayb (unseen), the true knowledge of which belongs to Allah ﷻ alone.
How do we protect ourselves?
Just as there are digital firewalls like anti-virus installed on our systems to secure them from any sort of intrusion like viruses or online hackers we also require a spiritual firewall that protects us from the shayateen in the spiritual world. The spiritual firewall is built by much dhikr, ibadah, reciting and understanding Quran and remaining conscious of Allah ﷻ. Likewise to protect us from shayateen threats in the physical and online world we require a human firewall which is our own wisdom, knowledge and understanding that provides ability to sense threats and keep our lives and privacy secure. In this age of information and technology we require all three and following are a few guidelines on this.
8 Essential Digital Security Steps For Devices - Amnesty International
1. Don't ignore updates - Frequently update your devices
2. Use a Password Manager - It generates passwords that are hard to guess and stores them in encrypted form.
3. Double Up - Enable two-factor authentication if you can.
4. Get Organized - Delete account you no longer use. Review your privacy settings on sites like Google & Facebook.
5. Secure Your Phone - Choose a complex screen lock like an 8-digit pin or alphanumeric code. Make sure you can recover account if you loose your phone.
6. Use a VPN App - A VPN will help protect your online activities when accessing Wifi.
7. Choose Apps Carefully - Only download them from official app store.
8. Think Before You Click - SMS and email attachments could contain malware.
Where Prophet Muhammad ﷺ warned us against the trials (fitnah) of dajjal, he also taught us how to protect ourselves against him. In several ahadith, he specifically advised to recite Surah Al Kahf (chapter 18) on Fridays and learn the first and last 10 ayahs for protection, such as: “if anyone learns the first ten verses of the Surah al-Kahf, he will be protected from the Dajjal.” (Sahih Muslim 809a) It is quite interesting to note that the first 10 ayahs mention the story of ashaab e kahf (young people of the cave) who were extremely careful in conducting their daily activities in a hostile environment where a spiritual virus of disbelief could have infected them just as spywares can infect our devices. To protect themselves they sought refuge in a cave, they were careful not to reveal their identity in public, careful of what they ate, they kept a dog for security and they prayed much to Allah for protection. Doing so Allah ﷻ saved them through His special grace (Al Quran 18:16) and they were able to escape that trial. Hence in this age of information and technology, as we get closer to dajjal's arrival, there is much to learn from the Quran and Prophet’s sunnah, as long as we are willing to pay attention towards it: (Al Quran 18:54) "THUS, INDEED, have We given in this Qur'an many facets to every kind of lesson [designed] for [the benefit of] mankind."
Indian opposition says Modi used Israeli spyware on rival Gandhi, Al Jazeera, 19 Jul 2021
India tried to hack PM Imran’s phone, The Express Tribune, July 19, 2021
Al Jazeera journalists hacked using Israeli firm’s spyware, Al Jazeera, 21 Dec 2020
Pegasus scandal shows risk of Israel's spy-tech diplomacy: experts, The Express Tribune, July 19, 2021, https://tribune.com.pk/story/2311418/pegasus-scandal-shows-risk-of-israels-spy-tech-diplomacy-experts
Kashmiri journalists among potential targets of Pegasus spyware
Published on: Jul 19, 2021, https://www.etvbharat.com/english/national/state/jammu-and-kashmir/kashmiri-journalists-among-potential-targets-of-pegasus-spyware/na20210719204420801
Amnesty International - Twitter Official
Message of the Quran, Muhammad Asad
Sahih Muslim, Tirmidhi - Sunnah.com
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