ToTok chat app revealed as a spy tool, removed from the App Store – 9to5Mac

Apple removed ToTok from the App Store after an assessment of ified intelligence and a New york times The investigation found that the app was a spy tool used by the United Arab Emirates.

The chat app, which became one of the most downloaded social apps in the United States last week, revealed that it provides highly sensitive personal data to the government of the United Arab Emirates…

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the New york times According to Piece, the popularity of ToTok was first established in the UAE, where other messaging apps are banned, but has since taken off in the United States and elsewhere.

It is touted as an easy and secure way to chat via video or SMS with friends and family, even in a country that has restricted popular messaging services like WhatsApp and Skype.

But the service, ToTok, is actually a spy tool, according to US officials familiar with an assessment of ified intelligence and a New york times investigation of the application and its developers. It is used by the government of the United Arab Emirates to try to track every conversation, movement, relationship, date, sound, and image of those who install it on their phones.

ToTok, introduced just a few months ago, has been downloaded millions of times from Apple and Google app stores by users in the Middle East, Europe, Asia, and Asia. Africa and North America. While the majority of its users are in the UAE, ToTok has jumped to become one of the most downloaded social apps in the U.S. last week, according to the app rankings and App Annie, a research firm [ …]

Technical analysis and interviews with IT security experts have shown that the company behind ToTok, Breej Holding, is most likely a shell company affiliated with DarkMatter, an Abu Dhabi-based cyber intelligence and hacking company where officials Emirati intelligence, former employees of the National Security Agency and former Israeli military intelligence agents are working.

DarkMatter is the subject of an FBI investigation, according to former employees and law enforcement officials, for possible cybercrime. American intelligence assessment and technical analysis also linked ToTok to Pax AI, an Abu Dhabi-based data mining company that appears to be linked to DarkMatter.

Pax AI's head office operates from the same Abu Dhabi building as the UAE intelligence agency, which until recently was the location where DarkMatter was based [photo below] above].

U.S. intelligence was aware of it, according to the report, and had warned the allies not to use it.

It was not clear when U.S. intelligence services first determined that ToTok was an UAE intelligence tool, but a person familiar with the assessment said that U.S. officials had warned some allies of its dangers. It is unclear whether U.S. officials have confronted their UAE government counterparts about the app. A digital security expert in the Middle East, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss powerful hacking tools, said that senior Emirati officials had told him that …

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