British Gas workers' pension money 'used for NSO Group shares': report

British Gas workers' pension money 'used for NSO Group shares': report
2 min read
18 January, 2022
A report has revealed that pension money for workers at British Gas was used to buy the Israeli NSO Group
NSO became the focus of international attention following the spyware scandal last year [Getty- archive]

Pension money for workers at the UK’s British Gas energy company has been used to purchase shares in Israeli tech developer NSO Group, whose tools were used to spy on the phones of several government officials, journalists, and activists around the world, according to the Financial Times.

Centrica, a retirement investment fund and the parent company of British Gas, was among the biggest contributors to an investment stake in NSO in 2019, amounting to 1 billion euros, FT cited three people as saying.

Centrica's investment fund allocated pension cash to a private equity fund raised by Novalpina Capital, a firm set up in 2017 which owns a 70 percent stake in NSO, according to the software company.

"The Centrica Combined Common Investment Fund has a seat on a committee of Novalpina’s biggest investors. Each of these investors contributes at least tens of millions of euros, two people with knowledge of the matter said," reported FT.

Centrica did not respond when contacted by The New Arab.

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Last year, NSO's Pegasus - the developer’s spyware tool - became the focus of international attention following several reports that the spyware was used by governments to illicitly target human rights campaigners, journalists and politicians.

In October 2019, WhatsApp sued NSO, accusing it of helping government spies break into the phones of roughly 1,400 users across four continents with targets that included diplomats, political dissidents, and senior government officials.