Mexico says officials spent $61 million on Pegasus spyware | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED X-Frame-Options: SAMEORIGIN

Mexico says officials spent $61 million on Pegasus spyware

Mexico’s top security official said Wednesday that two previous administrations spent $61 million to buy Pegasus spyware that has been implicated in government surveillance of opponents and journalists around the world.

Public Safety Secretary Rosa Icela Rodríguez said records had been found of 31 contracts signed during the administrations of President Felipe Calderón in 2006-2012 and President Enrique Peña Nieto in 2012-18. Some contracts may have been disguised as purchases of other equipment.

The government said many of the contracts with the Israeli spyware firm NSO Group were signed with front companies, which are often used in Mexico to facilitate kickbacks or avoid taxes.

Last week, the government's top anti-money laundering investigator said officials from the two previous administrations had spent about $300 million in government money to purchase spyware. But that figure may reflect all spyware and surveillance purchases, or may include yet-unidentified contracts.

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