Apple filed a lawsuit against Israeli technology company NSO Group, accusing it of surveillance of select iOS users by infecting their devices with targeted spyware.

In specific, the iPhone maker explained in a statement NSO Group has infected iOS devices with its Pegasus spyware and though it targeted only a small number of global users, it also allegedly impacted people across multiple platforms, including Android.

It also claimed to have identified with a research group at the University of Toronto an exploit called Forced Entry, which was used to break into Apple devices and install the latest version of Pegasus.

The vendor explained its legal action aimed to ban NSO Group from “further harming individuals by using Apple’s products and services” through a permanent injunction, in addition to compensation for violations of US legislation.

Apple SVP of software engineering Craig Federighi argued state-sponsored bodies “like the NSO Group spend millions of dollars on sophisticated surveillance technologies without effective accountability. That needs to change”.

The company also noted it has not found evidence of attacks against devices using iOS 15 and later versions, and urged users to update their devices to the latest software.

It also pledged $10 million into backing researchers of cyber-surveillance and organisations advocating against such practices.

NSO Group recently drew fire over the use of Pegasus.