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PSG Executives Preyed By Cyber-Attack, As Club Gets New Liverpool Signee

Nasser Al-Khelaifi
Nasser Al-Khelaifi, the President of further Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain

July 22, (THEWILL) – A hacking cyber-attack on Nasser Al-Khelaifi, the President of further Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain has led to the leaking of two of his mobile phone numbers, according to information made available by the French football club.

The hacking software platform known as Pegasus, which is marketed and licensed to governments around the world by the Israeli company NSO Group, was reportedly used for the attack and it allowed the attackers infiltrate the PSG chief’s personal details.

This infiltration gave the hackers access to another landline number used by Jean-Martial Ribes, the club’s Director of Communications, who replaced the previous long-serving Director, Jérôme Touboul, two months ago.

The French daily afternoon newspaper and the main publication of the Le Monde Group, Le Monde, made the revelation, claiming that the attacks happened during the diplomatic conflict between Qatar, which is Al-Khelaifi’s country of birth, and Saudi Arabia in late 2018.

The suspicions of the attack being a product of the Pegasus platform was based on the certainty that the intent of the hacking was monitoring the communications of the President and the Communications Director which Le Monde expressed as there being “little doubt that people were trying to put these individuals under surveillance.”

In a statement of response, a spokesperson of the Al-Khelaifi-run beIN Media Group, was dismissive of the implication of such an attack, claiming that such hacking incidents were regular for the media group and no longer a surprise for them.

It read: “Malicious hacks and threats to our business and our people are a shocking daily reality for our group.

“We have known about the cyber-attacks against beIN Sports and its employees by certain entities for years. During this time, beIN has joined with legal advocates and many international organisations to fight against piracy and uphold the rule of law.

“However, the sophisticated attacks against our group’s interests and reputation have also been marked by smear campaigns, commercial sabotage, spurious lawsuits and cyber-attacks against our chairman.

“These are just some of the daily threats against our businesses and our people. These acts are shameful and wholly illegal – it’s not political, often it’s pure commercial espionage against beIN.

“The relevant authorities should ensure that the complete lawlessness of these rogue actors is held to account.”

In other PSG news, the former French champions unveiled their summer transfer acquisition from Liverpool as Georginio Wijnaldum finally made it to the club’s Paris HQ to be officially revealed and posed for formal press pictures with his new shirt.