Oregon’s Public Employee Retirement System, or PERS, is now the largest shareholder in the NSO Group – an Israeli spyware company. NSO’s software Pegasus has been used by oppressive regimes to hack the phones of fifty-thousand journalists and foreign officials, including associates of murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and French president Emanuel Macron. PERS invested $250 million in the group via the Oregon State Treasury. Now the pension fund is quietly and discretely working to liquidate its investment so it can be passed on to other investors.
KBOO's Ethan Sandweiss interviews independent journalist Richard Silverstein for more.