The Saudi hack on Jeff Bezos' phone went on for months and led to gigabytes of personal data being stolen, according to new report
- The Financial Times reported on Tuesday that Saudi Arabia's possible hack of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos' phone may have led to the extraction of dozens of kilobytes of data that continued on for months.
- The Guardian first reported on Tuesday that Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had covertly stolen data from the Amazon CEO's phone after sending an unsolicited video that contained a malicious file.
- According to the Financial Times, the scope of the attack was much larger than previously reported.
- Saudi Arabia responded to the Times report, calling for the disclosure of the analysis and any additional evidence.
- Bezos' attorney said that Bezos is "cooperating with investigations."
- For more stories go to the Business Insider South Africa homepage.
More details have emerged about the alleged Saudi hacking of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos' phone and indicate that the operation likely went on for months without detection and resulted in dozens of gigabytes being stolen.
The Guardian first reported on Tuesday that Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had covertly extracted data from the Amazon CEO's phone after sending an unsolicited video that contained a malicious file, citing unnamed sources with knowledge of an international investigation into the hacking.
The Saudi government has called the report "absurd" and called for an investigation into the claims.
Bezos' attorney told the Guardian that Bezos is "cooperating with investigations."
According to the Financial Times, the scope of the attack was much larger than previously reported.
A forensic analysis conducted by FTI Consulting, a business advisory firm hired by Jeff Bezos, said that within hours of the file being sent to Bezos from the Crown Prince's personal number, a "massive and unauthoriSed" amount of data began to be extracted in a campaign that escalated "for months."
According to the Times, which reviewed the FTI Consulting report, dozens of gigabytes of data were extracted, "compared to the few hundred kilobytes daily average in the months before the video file was sent."
Saudi Arabia responded to The Times report, calling for the disclosure of the analysis and any additional evidence.
"Saudi Arabia does not conduct illicit activities of this nature, nor does it condone them," a Saudi official told The Times. "We request the presentation of any supposed evidence and the disclosure of any company that examined any forensic evidence so that we can show it is demonstrably false."
A spokesman for FTI Consulting told The Times that its client work is "confidential," and it refused to comment.
The hack is believed to have happen after the two men exchanged friendly messages on Whatsapp on May 1, 2o18, weeks after they had met at a dinner in Los Angeles while the prince was in the US on official business.
Bezos' team began investigating his phone in January 2019 after The National Enquirer published a story about him having an affair, after which Bezos accused the tabloid's parent company American Media Inc., of blackmailing him by threatening to publish his nude images.
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