A messaging application that originated in the United Arab Emirates and ended up on popular app stores has been labelled a “spying tool”.
Though the app has already been downloaded by millions of users on Google Play and Apple Store, it turns the UAE government used to try and track “every conversation, movement, relationship, appointment, sound and image of those who install it on their phones.”
According to experts, the development of such applications shows the ability that governments have to cut intermediaries and directly spy on their targets.
New York Times claims that the firm behind ToTok is most probably a “front company” affiliated with an Abu Dhabi based cyber intelligence firm – Dark Matter.
Last week the app was removed from the Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store. Huawei’s AppGallery has been pulled into the controversy when an Editor’s review on the AppGallery endorsed the application as secure – which isn’t a great look for the company which has been accused of being a security threat.
It’s not clear if Huawei endorsed the popular application because of the lack of popular apps on its AppStore.