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If you suspect being targeted with Pegasus, get in touch by January 7: Supreme Court panel

🔴 The committee said that if it determines that the reasons for the concerned individual's suspicion compel further investigation, it will request the individual to hand over their device for tests.

The Indian Express had reported on November 30 that the panel had asked the petitioners and their lawyers to submit the devices that were suspected to have been targeted for “technical evaluation”.

The committee constituted by the Supreme Court to look into allegations of snooping using the Pegasus spyware invited all citizens who suspected their mobile phones had been targeted to contact the panel by noon on January 7.

“The committee requests any citizen of India who has reasonable cause to suspect that his/her mobile has been compromised due to specific usage of NSO Group Israel’s Pegasus software to contact the technical committee appointed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India, with reasons as to why you believe your device may have been infected with Pegasus malware, and whether you would be in a position to allow the Technical Committee to examine your device,” the three-member panel said in an advertisement in several national dailies.

The committee said that if it determines that the reasons for the concerned individual’s suspicion compel further investigation, it will request the individual to hand over their device for tests.

The Indian Express had reported on November 30 that the panel had asked the petitioners and their lawyers to submit the devices that were suspected to have been targeted for “technical evaluation”.

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The members of the panel are Dr Naveen Kumar Chaudhary, dean of National Forensic Sciences University in Gandhinagar; Dr Prabaharan P, professor at Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham in Kerala; and Dr Ashwin Anil Gumaste, Institute Chair associate professor at IIT, Bombay. The work of the committee is supervised by retired Supreme Court judge, Justice R V Raveendran.

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Terms of the panel

The court asked the committee to determine, among other things, whether Pegasus was used on phones or other devices of citizens to access stored data, eavesdrop on conversations, and intercept information.

After a global media investigation revealed that Pegasus may have been used to target journalists, activists, officials, and even union ministers, some activists and journalists moved the Supreme Court seeking the formation of a committee to look into the issue.

On October 27, a three-judge bench of Chief Justice of India N V Ramana and Justices Surya Kant and Hima Kohli set up the three-member technical committee, to be overseen by Justice Raveendran.

The court asked the committee to determine, among other things, whether Pegasus was used on phones or other devices of citizens to access stored data, eavesdrop on conversations, and intercept information.

It also asked the committee to determine whether the software was acquired by a state or the central government, and that if a state, Centre, or any of its agencies had used the software, what laws and procedures had been followed.

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