After the party’s Secretary General’s warning… How does Israel collect its information from Lebanon?

The BBC website reported that southern Lebanon has turned into a scene of clashes between Hezbollah and the Israeli army since October 8, that is, a day after the attack carried out by Hamas in the areas surrounding Gaza.

Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah urged his supporters, especially fighters and their families, to abandon the use of cell phones in the areas of southern Lebanon and border villages.

Talk about a possible Israeli infiltration of these devices has intensified over the past months, especially after the assassination of prominent Hamas leader Saleh Al-Arouri, with a march that struck an apartment in the southern suburb of Beirut, pointing the finger at Israel, which did not claim responsibility for the operation.

Information technology expert Amer Al-Tabsh says that the smartphone “is not safe for daily use, whether in terms of privacy or the possibility of hacking it and stealing information, but in the event of war, it can turn into a spying tool.”

According to Al-Tabsh, the smartphone provides precise services such as a camera, microphone, and location, and there are several ways to track using these services.

Amer Al-Tabsh explains that smartphones “are superior in terms of sound purification and the characteristics of modern microphones, such as electronic sound and noise reduction techniques, which generate a very high-resolution sound signature that can be distinguished using the human ear or using artificial intelligence.”

He points out that the voice fingerprint determines whether the wanted or targeted person is in a gathering place, such as a funeral or a social event. It is possible to recognize his voice if he speaks if someone’s phone has been hacked.

The phone’s camera works in conjunction with the microphone, and can be operated remotely and confirm the target visually, according to Amer Tabsh.

When the presence of the wanted person is confirmed, tracking begins via drones or satellites.

Also, everything we write on the smartphone can reach a spy agency if the phone is hacked. He connects phrases with separate letters, so he combines them to understand the words, according to Al-Tabsh.

By typing on the phone, one can find out which applications are being used, monitor emails, and withdraw files from the phone without the person knowing.

The smartphone gives coordinates about its location permanently and continuously, with the aim of improving network transmission. Al-Tabsh says, “One of the simplest things is to detect this location and pinpoint it at a distance of less than one meter sometimes.”

He talks about the possibility of hacking any smart home device that connects to the Internet, such as lighting, smart TV, and other gadgets.

Amer Al-Tabsh says that the Israelis “discovered a security vulnerability in the smartphone, and this loophole was sold in the form of an application that could enter the phone without the phone owner’s knowledge.”

This loophole was used for years without the phone owner knowing that there was an “excess load” inside his phone. Amer Tabsh talks here about the controversial Israeli “Pegasus” program, which was produced by the Israeli company “NSO”.

Amer Al-Tabsh says that Apple and Google have adopted services to turn off the camera and microphone, and despite this, “protecting a smartphone from hacking remains very difficult.”

He adds: “Even if we modify the phone’s settings and disable the audio and camera services, prevention will not be guaranteed, because the settings can be changed without the person’s knowledge, if the phone is hacked.”

He points out that disabling the location system is one of the most difficult things, as even if it is stopped, the service continues to broadcast coordinates about the phone’s location for technical reasons, including improving the transmission service.

He points out that “even if the phone is completely turned off, the location service continues to broadcast in one way or another.”

He says that the only way to prevent it is to pull or remove the phone’s battery, “and this process is very difficult in smartphones.”

Regarding Hezbollah’s request from fighters, their relatives, and the population in general not to use phones, military affairs expert, retired Brigadier General Khalil Helu, says, “The fighter must have an alternative to the phone so that he can contact his leadership.” Unless the process is pre-determined.”

He adds: “Israel still relies on human inquiry, but we do not know their number or effectiveness.”

He explains that their method of work has changed and turned to collecting information over the years.

According to the estimates of Brigadier General Khalil Helu, their mission has become to collect information about people’s residence, movements, type of cars, friends and family members, and other information that can be obtained through their accounts on social media sites.

Hezbollah published video clips that it says show its fighters targeting radars and devices installed on towers inside and around Israeli barracks on the border with Lebanon.

Amer Al-Tabsh says that this equipment on the border includes radar devices, including high-resolution cameras, which include a thermal imaging feature.

He adds that, through these devices, Israeli forces can distinguish what is approaching the border: humans, animals, vehicles, and missiles.

He points out that listening devices have been installed that allow sounds to be heard over a certain range, such as a very large amplifier. “They can hear any abnormal movement or sound at the border.”

General Helou believes that Hezbollah’s strikes contributed to “disabling these capabilities.”

He says that Israel “was acting comfortably on the border, hearing and seeing, through these devices.”

He points out that these devices are thermal radars that monitor the movements of animals and humans and pick up sounds from a distance. (BBC)

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