A very famous messaging app that was presently running in UAE as the best substitute to WhatsApp is taken down from the Google play store and Apple store while it is reportedly operating as a government surveillance tool. In a report by The Times, the app was working for senior intelligence officers UAE’s and used to track citizen’s location, discussions, and other personal data.
The app was launched earlier this year and become famous in UAE’s because apps like Skype and WhatsApp are banned all over UAE. Totok offered a free, very fast, and secure calls and messaging experience to the users thus becomes one of the most downloaded social app all over the UAE last week.
It’s been taken down from the largest app stores the app has not close itself it means still the app is present on the internet. FBI and government have not published any statement however the app developers have published an open letter on their official website for the users saying:
The app was equipped with high-security standards like AES256, AES/SSL, RSA, and SHA256, to diligently secure the data of users. We also implemented a privacy framework that complies with the local and international legal requirements to protect our users at all times.
Patrick Wardle, the security expert and analyzer for The Times said, you do not need to hack people to spy on them if you can get people to willingly download this app on their smart phones. What intelligence you require by uploading location, video chats, and their numbers?
According to the report by the Times, Breej Holding Ltd., the company which introduced ToTok is most likely to be a mascot for Dark Matter, the UAE cybersecurity firm. The app is also claimed to link with AX1, a firm which do Data-mining for Signal Intelligence agency belonging to UAE.
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