Edition ZDNet reports that at the beginning of October 2020, Germany in Romania underwent police raids on the offices of companies associated with the development of the so-called legal spivari FinFisher.
According to a statement from the Munich prosecutor's office, the raids were carried out on 15 properties (this includes both office premises and private apartments) in the vicinity of Munich, as well as a Romanian company associated with the development of FinFisher.
These raids are part of an investigation launched last summer after complaintssubmitted by representatives of the Netzpolitik portal. This complaint was also signed by such human rights groups as Society for Freedom Rights, Reporters Without Borders and European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights… They argued that FinFisher malware was installed on the devices of activists, political dissidents and citizens in countries with repressive regimes, as well as in countries where FinFisher was prohibited from selling its software.
Then the FinFisher developers denied these allegations and sued Netzpolitik, forcing its editorial office to remove original articleHowever, the investigation of the case was continued anyway. The Munich prosecutor's office confirmed to ZDNet reporters that the recent raids were part of this lawsuit, in which the German authorities are collecting evidence of the allegations in the complaint.
It must be said that the German news agency Tagesschau, which was the first to report the raids, generally claims that FinFisher used satellite companies elsewhere in the world to circumvent strict export restrictions on its software.
Let me remind you that FinFisher (aka FinSpy) spyware is rumored to be actively used for political surveillance of journalists and dissidents in various countries of the world. In 2011, the program was leaked to WikiLeaks by Julian Assange, after which it became the property of anonymous and was closely scrutinized by information security specialists and other interested parties.
FinFisher can intercept the victim's correspondence on social networks, track email messages, work as a keylogger, provide access to files stored on the infected machine, and record video and audio using the built-in microphone and camera. There are assemblies of FinFisher products for Windows, macOS and Linux. In addition, over the years, mobile versions of spyvari have been created for almost all platforms existing today: Android, iOS, BlackBerry, Symbian and Windows Mobile.
FinFisher's renowned clients include: German federal police and Berlin police… But also the company's tools have been repeatedly found on the devices of oppositionists and journalists in countries such as Ethiopia, Bahrain, Egypt and Turkey, that is, in countries where the export of such spivari is prohibited.