Summary of The Post-Snowden Cyber Arms Hustle

An Indian hacker promised governments he could supply them with NSA-level technology. But when Mauritania hired him to help spy on its cell networks, things went way, way south.

Bloomberg Businessweek ,

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The Post-Snowden Cyber Arms Hustle summary
When a two-week job turns into an indefinite prison sentence in a West African country, who’s to blame?


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In a gripping real-life story that reads like a thriller, Bloomberg Businessweek cybersecurity reporters Jordan Robertson and Michael Riley uncover the dangerous territory of international cybersecurity and chronicle the recklessness of an inexperienced, albeit driven, businessman. The journalists expertly unfold the series of decisions Manish Kumar made, which ultimately led to the ongoing plight of an innocent Italian bodyguard, Cristian Provvisionato, now held by the Mauritania government. getAbstract recommends this exposé and morality tale to cybersecurity enthusiasts and human rights advocates.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How entrepreneur Manish Kumar developed his cyber arms business, and
  • How Kumar’s irresponsible decisions put an innocent man in a Mauritanian prison.


After trying out several business ventures, entrepreneur Manish Kumar founded Wolf Intelligence, a spy technology provider. In 2014, he presented at the major industry trade show, Milipol Qatar. Mauritanian officials were interested in his offer – software that performs a “silent SMS attack,” whereby you can hack someone’s cell phone. Kumar struck a deal with them for $2.5 million with the country’s representative, Ahmed Bah dit Hmeida.

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About the Authors

 Jordan Robertson and Michael Riley are cybersecurity reporters for Bloomberg Businessweek

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