2 arrested for snooping on mobile phone users - The New Indian Express

2 arrested for snooping on mobile phone users

Published: 07th November 2013 11:27 AM

Last Updated: 07th November 2013 11:27 AM

The Central Crime Branch (CCB) police arrested two persons allegedly using spy software on Android and Blackberry-based mobile phones.

Nikhil Giri and Virendra Singh Rawat, both software developers attached to Lynx Security and Detective Services Pvt Ltd, were allegedly found monitoring phone calls and messages of people on behalf of their clients.

Once the software is clandestinely installed in the target’s phone, whenever a person uses the device, data from it is automatically uploaded to a server using the phone’s GPRS. The data includes call recordings, messages, e-mails, chats, pictures, videos and location. 

Modus Operandi

An application for Android or Blackberry-based mobile phones would be installed on the target’s phone by getting hold of the target’s mobile phone for a while.

The installed spy software would be hidden from the actual user of the mobile phone. The clients of the agencies would be provided with a login username and password to view the data and movement of the target’s mobile phone on a web browser and Google Maps.

Foreign-funded Project

Rawat, a software developer in Pune, with the help of code writers, developed spy software for Android and Blackberry-based phones. 

He, in turn, tied up with a company based in Peru, by name of ‘Controlem.com’, to co-develop and host the software on their servers. 

The software development was funded by Roberto Martinez and Piero Meza of ‘www.controlem.com’, both Peru nationals, according to police. Once the software was fully developed, Rawat controlled its operations in India. 

Security and detective agencies across India employed Rawat’s services to obtain personal information and details of targets.

Overseas Clientele

 Investigations revealed that many clients of the company, who stay abroad, delegated snooping on individuals to the security agency.

The accused used the technology in cases of domestic disputes. They would snoop through either the husband’s or the wife’s gadgets. In case of firms, rival firms were spied upon and in organisations, employees’ activities were monitored, the police added. 

Both Giri and Rawat were produced before the Court and taken into custody. Their office was raided on October 30.

During the raid, it was confirmed from office documents and registers that the firm was involved in spying using software installed on mobile phones. 

Computers, hard disks, mobile phones, Android application packages, cash and other records were seized from the agency.

A case has been registered at Ashoknagar police station under various sections of the Information Technology Act, the Indian Telegraph Act and the Indian Penal Code.

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