NSO Group had been given explicit permission by the Israeli government to try to sell the homegrown hacking tools to the Saudis. It was a classified arrangement and resulted in the sale later being sealed in Riyadh in a deal reportedly worth at least $55m.
“In Israel there is a strong political movement to make diplomacy through business,” said the person, speaking on the condition of anonymity. “Business first, diplomacy later. When you make a deal together, it opens a lot of doors to diplomacy.”