Above is One of the fake images purportedly used by Hamas hackers.
Dozens of Israeli soldiers had their smartphones hacked by a Hamas militant group posing as women seeking attention Israel’s army says.
A spokesperson said the soldiers sent fake photos of young girls and lured them to download the app without knowing that they could access their handsets.
He said that there was no significant breach of information before the scam was counter.
Hamas, which regulates Gaza, and Israel see each other as deadly rivals.
It is the third attempt in recent years by Hamas to infiltrate Israeli soldiers ‘ phones, but it has been the most sophisticated yet, according to Lt. Col Jonathan Conricus.
He said, “We see that they’re of course learning and upping their game.”
Col Conricus said that the hackers had masqueraded as young women with false Hebrew claims to be immigrants or to have visual or hearing impairments in order to appear convincing.
After striking up friendships, the “women” would send links that they said would enable them to exchange images, but that in fact caused the soldiers to download malware-programs that could attack smartphones or computer devices.
Once the link was opened, the program would install a virus that would give the hacker access to the phone’s data, including location, photos and contacts.
It could also remotely manipulate the phone, using it to take photos and recordings without the knowledge of the owner.
Col Conricus said the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) had uncovered the plot several months ago but had allowed it to continue under surveillance until they shut it down.
The IDF has previously warned soldiers about the need for vigilance when using smartphones and issued guidelines to try to prevent hacking attacks.
Israel and Hamas are in a constant state of conflict and both are engaged in intelligence operations against each other as part of their continuing hostilities.