L'engagement des investisseurs à lutter contre les logiciels espions est compromis par les investissements passés dans le fabricant américain de logiciels malveillants.

Investors’ promise to fight spyware is cast into doubt by their past stakes in a U.S. malware-producing company.

Last Monday, the Biden administration’s initiative took on a new dimension with the announcement of the membership of six countries in an international coalition dedicated to the fight against the distribution of spyware by companies such as NSO Group or Intellexa . This coalition aims to curb the misuse of technology that could undermine the foundations of democratic societies.

Alongside this government effort, private sector actors, notably certain investors, have also demonstrated their commitment to this fight. Paladin Capital Group, notable among these investors for its broad portfolio in cybersecurity startups, however, found itself at the center of some controversy. Despite his current commitment to anti-spyware, it was revealed that he had, in the past, invested in Boldend, a malware company, according to a 2021 leaked slide reported by E.S News. Paladin, however, claimed to have since ceased all investment in this company.

The United States has stepped up its campaign against the malicious use of digital surveillance by blacklisting companies like NSO Group and Candiru and imposing export controls and restrictions on these entities. Action has recently expanded to the imposition of economic sanctions specifically targeting executives of these companies, signaling increased awareness of the risks posed by this industry.

Paladin’s participation in a meeting at the White House as well as the Democracy Summit in Seoul highlights the concerted effort between governments and investors to contain the threats posed by surveillance technologies. Paladin, in particular, has outlined a series of investment principles highlighting its commitment to supporting companies that promote the defense and security of free societies. Paladin’s Michael Steed stressed the importance of examining technologies for their potential for abuse in the context of commercial spyware.

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The findings regarding Boldend, however, serve as a reminder of the complexities inherent in the cybersecurity industry. It developed Origen, a platform capable, according to leaked documents, of facilitating the creation of malware for all types of operating systems, and even of automating attacks against various devices.

The question of aligning investors’ actions with their public statements remains relevant. A company’s ability to serve the interests of “free and open societies”, particularly when it comes to geopolitical partners with controversial human rights records, remains a subject of open debate within the community. investors.

Ultimately, as the fight against commercial spyware intensifies internationally, the balance between security, national interests and the preservation of democratic values ​​continues to present complex challenges for governments, investors and the cybersecurity industry as a whole.