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Accueil ACTUALITES RSF uncovers continued surveillance on Togolese media figures

RSF uncovers continued surveillance on Togolese media figures

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has revealed this week that Pegasus cyber-espionage software continues to infiltrate the mobile phones of Togolese journalists, especially Loïc Lawson and Anani Sossou. The duo currently faces legal action in Togo, triggered by a complaint from the Minister of Urban Planning.


The Togolese Minister of Urban Planning has lodged a complaint against journalists Loïc Lawson and Anani Sossou for divulging information about a substantial sum stolen from his residence. Adedze Kodjo acknowledges the theft but disputes the journalists’ disclosed amount, emphasizing he never revealed the extent of the damages himself.

RSF reports that, according to their findings, at least 23 intrusions via the Pegasus software were observed on Loïc Lawson’s phone in the first half of 2021.

Pegasus, a highly sophisticated spyware with the ability to infiltrate smartphones discreetly, grants access to all data, including messages, photos, contacts, and personal information. Developed by the Israeli company NSO, the company asserts on its website that it provides technologies to government agencies to combat crime and terrorism. However, concerns arise as it becomes apparent that some governments misuse these potent tools to spy on individuals in civil society, human rights activists, opponents, journalists, lawyers, and more.

Arnaud Froger, head of RSF’s investigative bureau, asserts that the authorities have long targeted the two journalists: “Our investigation into the circumstances of the detention of these two journalists revealed they were also subjects of a cyber-espionage operation in 2021, at a time when Togo was a confirmed client of Pegasus.” As of now, the Togolese authorities have yet to respond to these grave allegations.

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