Greece to ban sale of spyware amid wiretapping scandal

Greece will soon ban the sale of spyware, the government said on Monday, following a newspaper report that more than 30 people, including ministers and businessmen, were under government surveillance using phone malware.

A list of individuals whose phones are believed to have been infected with Predator malware was published on Sunday by the left-wing newspaper Documento, which cited two sources who played a role in surveillance on behalf of the conservative government. Reuters.

Government spokesman Yannis Ikonomu declaredthat the report that the government is behind spyware surveillance is “baseless”. He said the Greek state did not use or buy any such spyware and added that the judiciary would investigate the latest report. Greece, he told reporters, will soon submit a bill to Parliament to ban the sale of spyware. “We will not allow a shadow to remain on the issues that poison Greek society,” he said.

The Documento report is the latest development in a wiretapping scandal that has sparked political unrest in Greece as the European Union takes a tougher look at the use and sale of spyware. The Greek prosecutor launched an investigation earlier this year. Most of the alleged targets, including the former New Democracy prime minister and the current foreign and finance ministers, declined to comment or told the paper they knew nothing about the case.

In July, socialist opposition leader Nikos Androulakis filed a complaint with the high court prosecutor’s office over an attempt to eavesdrop on his mobile phone using a tracking program. The government, which faces elections in 2023, said at the time that the surveillance was legal because it was approved by the prosecutor. The Greek prosecutor is also investigating the journalist’s allegations that his smartphone was infected with a tracking program in the course of a Greek intelligence operation.

The Special European Parliamentary Committee (PEGA), which is investigating the use of Pegasus and similar spyware for surveillance, completed a visit to Greece and Cyprus last week. “This issue must be urgently and fully clarified before next year’s elections,” Greece told reporters. Sofia In’t Veldrepresentative of the delegation of the committee.

PS There are 2 options for such a response from the government:

  1. Mitsotakis considers all citizens to be idiots who do not understand that they are imposing a ban on the sale of a program that was widely used by the National Intelligence Service in relation to both the political opposition and fellow party members, cabinet members, businessmen and anyone else who could somehow make him a political competition.
  2. Mitsotakis is confused and begins to make mistakes, sending Yannis Iconoma to be torn to pieces by journalists.

Nevertheless, the position of Mitsotakis is quite strong, as he enjoys strong support from the United States represented by the Democratic Party. Under his leadership, the United States has increased its military presence in Greece several times in recent years, without paying the country a penny. HOn the contrary, Greece has purchased more than $5 billion worth of military products from the US military-industrial complex. Greece is more than fulfilling all the instructions of the White House and the State Department regarding sanctions against Russia, even verbally declaring war … And such profitable obedient allies are usually not abandoned.

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