Mozilla, the browser maker of Firefox, is mulling over to block DarkMatter, a cyber-security company that is its gatekeeper for internet security. This decision is being considered after a report published by Reuters associated the UAE based firm to cyber espionage.
According to the report by Reuters in January, DarkMatter offered its staff for an operation of secret hacking, which was codenamed Project Raven. This project was being carried out for an Emirati intelligence agency. The unit consisted of ex intelligence officials of US who carried out the cyber operations for UAE. The people who were working for Raven project earlier said that many executives of DarkMatter were not aware of the program which they say was operating from a mansion in Abu Dhabi that was converted into DarkMatter’s headquarters.
The operations consisted hacking into internet accounts of journalists, human rights activists, and from rival government officials. DarkMatter has denied of any such operations being carried out and said that it concentrates on protecting computer networks. Mozilla is considering whether it should grant the company the authority to verify websites as safe. Two Mozilla executives said that the report has raised concerns whether the company would take undue advantage of the authority.
Mozilla said that they have not come up with a decision as whether to block the company or not, but it is expecting that it will decide in few weeks. A senior director of Mozilla, Selena Deckelmann said that they don’t have any technical evidence of any kind of misuse but the report in Reuters itself is a strong evidence of a misuse that can occur in the future if it already hasn’t happened. She said that Mozilla was thinking of stripping all the 400 certifications that the company has granted to different websites since 2017 under limited authority.