ToTok messaging app revealed as an UAE surveillance tool

Why it matters: If you’re one of the millions of people around the world who has downloaded messaging app ToTok, you should delete it right away. According to a new report, it’s actually a spy tool used by the United Arab Emirates to track users’ activities.

With many messaging apps in parts of the middle east blocked or partially blocked, ToTok has proved very popular in the region since its launch a few months ago. It’s also become widely installed around the world, including in the US, where it was one of the most downloaded social apps last week.

But United States intelligence officials told The New York Times that the app is, in reality, a surveillance tool that can track every conversation, movement, relationship, appointment, sound, and image of those who install it–information that ends up in the hands of the UAE government.

ToTok messaging app revealed as an UAE surveillance tool 1

A technical analysis and interviews with computer security experts suggest the firm behind ToTok, Breej Holdings, is most likely a front company affiliated with DarkMatter, an Abu Dhabi-based cyberintelligence and hacking firm that contracts directly with the Emirati government and employees former intelligence agents from countries including the US and Israel.

ToTok was also linked to an Abu Dhabi-based data mining firm called Pax AI. The firm appears to be tied to DarkMatter and works out of the same building as the UAE’s signals intelligence agency (top of page).

“You don’t need to hack people to spy on them if you can get people to willingly download this app to their phone. By uploading contacts, video chats, location, what more intelligence do you need?” said security researcher Patrick Wardle, who performed a forensic analysis of ToTok.

While Apple and Google have removed ToTok from their app stores, it can still be used by those who’ve already downloaded it.

The news comes soon after the US Navy banned video-sharing app TikTok on personnel’s government-issued devices after it was deemed a “cybersecurity threat.”

About the author

E-Crypto News was developed to assist all cryptocurrency investors in developing profitable cryptocurrency portfolios through the provision of timely and much-needed information. Investments in cryptocurrency require a level of detail, sensitivity, and accuracy that isn’t required in any other market and as such, we’ve developed our databases to help fill in information gaps.

Related Posts

E-Crypto News Executive Interviews

Crypto Scams

Beanstalk Farms Loses $80M In A Massive DeFi Governance Flash-Loan Hack
Beanstalk Farms Loses $80M In A Massive DeFi Governance Flash-Loan Hack
April 23, 2022
Prove
Joon Pak Head of Crypto at Prove talks to Us about Crypto Fraud And More
April 11, 2022
Mintable
Mintable CEO Zach Burks Talks to Us about the Opensea Stolen NFTs and Their Recovery
March 21, 2022
Crypto Crime
Crypto Crime Surges To Record Highs As Thieves Follow Market Buzz – Chainalysis 2022 Report
February 24, 2022
Bots Circumvent 2FA Login At Coinbase And Other Crypto Exchanges In 2022
Bots Have Circumvented 2FA Logins At Coinbase And Other Crypto Exchanges In 2022
February 17, 2022

Automated trading with HaasBot Crypto Trading Bots

Blockchain/Cryptocurrency Questions and Answers

Russia
Roundtable Interview-What is the Effect of The Russia-Ukraine War on Cryptocurrency Prices?
March 4, 2022
GamStop
How Does Bitcoin Casino Work + 2021 Beginner’s Guide
November 8, 2021
Cryptocurrency
How to Buy and Sell Cryptocurrency
November 8, 2021
What Are Bitcoin Futures And How Will They Work In 2022?
November 4, 2021
Ethereum
The Unconventional Guide to Ethereum
October 28, 2021


CryptoCurrencyUSDChange 1hChange 24hChange 7d
Bitcoin29,535 0.09 % 0.64 % 2.65 %
Ethereum1,831.0 0.31 % 6.41 % 4.40 %
Tether1.001 0.15 % 0.09 % 0.11 %
USD Coin0.9989 0.16 % 0.08 % 0.04 %
BNB310.68 0.24 % 5.10 % 7.78 %
XRP0.3954 0.55 % 2.72 % 2.72 %
Binance USD1.005 0.16 % 0.49 % 0.34 %
Cardano0.9566 0.22 % 0.68 % 6.96 %
Solana44.44 0.10 % 8.35 % 10.70 %
Dogecoin0.07871 0.21 % 5.53 % 6.29 %

bitcoin
Bitcoin (BTC) $ 29,348.00
ethereum
Ethereum (ETH) $ 1,821.80
tether
Tether (USDT) $ 1.00
usd-coin
USD Coin (USDC) $ 1.00
bnb
BNB (BNB) $ 308.56
xrp
XRP (XRP) $ 0.39221
binance-usd
Binance USD (BUSD) $ 1.00
cardano
Cardano (ADA) $ 0.480409
solana
Solana (SOL) $ 44.09
dogecoin
Dogecoin (DOGE) $ 0.078484