According to a sensational report by The Guardian, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’s phone was hacked by the Saudi Arabian crown prince Mohammed bin Salman. The report also says that the “hacking” was accomplished by sending a video on Jeff Bezos’ WhatsApp account.
The malicious video file hacked into the phone and then exported huge amounts of personal data out of Bezos’ phone – as revealed in a digital forensic analysis.
Here’s a timeline of relationship between Jeff Bezos and Mohammed bin Salman – and how Jeff Bezos got himself hacked.
The timeline illustrated below is the courtesy of Business Insider:
March 21, 2018: Bezos and Salman have dinner together
April 4, 2018: They exchanged phone numbers
May 1, 2018: Salman sends an encrypted file to Bezos
November 8, 2018: Salman sends a misogynist meme to Jeff Bezos
January 9, 2019: Bezos announces his divorce, reveals he is dating Lauren Sanchez
February 7, 2019: Bezos accuses National Enquirer of blackmailing him
Bezos publishes a blog post accusing the National Enquirer’s publisher, AMI, of “extortion and blackmail.” He also insinuated possible ties between the National Enquirer’s investigation into his personal life and the Saudi government.
February 14, 2019: Salman gives a justification to Bezos that he did not hack his phone
After more than three months of no communication, Bezos reportedly receives another message from Crown Prince Mohammed. The message warns Bezos that “all what you hear” is not true, and says: “there is nothing against you or Amazon from me or Saudi Arabia
March 31, 2019: Bezos’ security agents accuse Saudi Government for hacking
Bezos’ chief security consultant Gavin de Becker writes in The Daily Beast that following an investigation into how the National Enquirer got its information, he could conclude “with high confidence” that the Saudi government had hacked Bezos’ phone and gained access to his private information. He reveals Bezos has been subject to numerous threats by the Saudis since October 2018
June 2019: United Nations starts to look into the issue
The United Nations starts to look into Bezos’ allegations about the Saudi hack after someone close to him reportedly shares a forensic analysis of the Amazon CEO’s phone.
January 21, 2020: The Guardian uncovers that the first video file was used for hacking
The Guardian first reports on a forensic investigation that shows Crown Prince Mohammed hacked Bezos’ phone in 2018 using a video file containing malware.
January 22, 2020: UN says that they are “reasonably certain” about Saudi prince being involved in hacking
UN investigators release their report a day later, saying with “reasonable certainty” that Crown Prince Mohammed was involved in hacking Bezos’ phone. The UN also calls for an “immediate investigation” into Crown Prince Mohammed.
All Featured Images Courtesy: Business Insider