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Hamas launches fake app to hack Israeli cell phones

Aug. 10, 2018 3:54 P.M. (Updated: Aug. 12, 2018 1:18 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- The Israeli cyber security company ClearSky announced, on Thursday evening, that the Hamas movement had launched an espionage software for smartphones and which imitates being an application used by Israelis to receive Code Red alerts to warn of incoming rockets.

The Israeli news website Ynet reported that, according to the Clearsky company, Hamas has attempted to make Israelis download the malware on their smartphones in an attempt to take control of their devices to be able to spy on them.

The company said that it believes that the fake application has been in the offing for some time, but that it was only scheduled to launch when barrages of rockets are fired, between Wednesday and Thursday, in an attempt to confuse Israelis about the authenticity of genuine rocket launches in southern Israel.

The application is reached via a fake website purporting to be the Israeli "Code Red" website.

Israelis are then duped into downloading the app, according to the cyber security company, through the use of fictitious Facebook profiles, bots on Twitter, emails and other methods.

Some 200 rockets were fired from the besieged Gaza Strip between Wednesday and Thursday in response to Israeli airstrikes that hit more than 150 alleged Hamas sites. Three Palestinians were killed during Israeli airstrikes, including a heavily pregnant mother and her toddler.

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