WASHINGTON (AP) – WikiLeaks says documents it obtained show that the CIA targeted everyday gadgets such as smartphones as part of a surveillance program. The hacks have allowed the CIA to collect audio and other messages from apps such as Facebook’s WhatsApp before the data got encrypted.
According to WikiLeaks, the CIA knew about several flaws in software made by Apple, Google, Samsung and others but didn’t tell the companies about them. Disclosing such vulnerabilities is supposed to be common practice so companies could fix them before hackers use them.
But WikiLeaks says the CIA kept knowledge of the vulnerabilities to itself for use in bypassing the encryption on apps such as WhatsApp, Signal, Telegram and Confide.
WikiLeaks says the CIA had two dozen such undisclosed vulnerabilities for Android gadgets alone.