BellTrox Infratech, founded in 2013 by a young tech entrepreneur named Sumit Gupta, has been called out by the Toronto-based web whistleblower Citizen Lab for supposedly targeting government officials, business biggies, politicians, lawyers, and environmentalists from around the world.
Citizen Labs first started investigating the leads in 2018 after getting in touch with former BellTrox employees and online evidence.
"This is one of the largest spy-for-hire operations ever exposed", Reuters quoted Citizen Lab researcher John Scott-Railton as saying on Tuesday. He also shared some info about the alleged hack attack on Twitter.
1. MAJOR REPORT: We're outing a massive hack-for-hire operation @citizenlab. We're attributing them to to BellTroX, an Indian company. Join me on a wild THREAD about mercenary hacking.https://t.co/8Q9Uk5FmW7 pic.twitter.com/kKAnkb3fje— John Scott-Railton (@jsrailton) June 9, 2020
8. BellTroX is their own worst kept secret… An employee sent one of their CVs as a test of their infra. Another guy bragged about his work online & included screenshots of attack infra… etc etc. pic.twitter.com/qyGryg2FVl— John Scott-Railton (@jsrailton) June 9, 2020
Sputnik tried contacting the company, but its numbers were out of reach.
According to Reuters, however, Gupta has denied all claims of being involved in what is being perceived as a hack attack and said that he was provided with the email login details of some people by his secret client and his firm downloaded messages from the inboxes for the client.
"I am not aware how they got these details but I was just helping them with the technical support”, Gupta, who is now under scrutiny for ostensibly hacking over 10,000 email IDs, was quoted as saying.
For now, US law enforcement agencies are probing the spy attacks on Americans, the details of which have not been revealed publicly.
This is not the first time that Gupta, who founded BellTrox in 2013, is being charged with unethical tech practices.
In 2015, the Indian techie was charged over hacking for two American private investigators who hired him to break into the accounts of some marketing professionals.
While India’s line of action and investigation into Gupta remains a mystery as of now, netizens are definitely discussing it on social media.
"While we initially thought that Dark Basin might be state-sponsored, the range of targets soon made it clear that Dark Basin was likely a hack-for-hire operation. Dark Basin’s targets were often on only one side of a contested legal proceeding, advocacy issue, or business deal." https://t.co/u9Rfnd5Fzy— Shashank Joshi (@shashj) June 9, 2020
The scope and scale of the hacking is like nothing I've ever seen before.— Raphael Satter (@razhael) June 9, 2020
Researchers at @citizenlab - who have a report out today - have a write-up that gets into extraordinary detail about what this group did ... and how they were caught in the act:https://t.co/yUszvQyCgE