In recent coverage in the Israeli media outlet “Calcalist”, it is suggested that NASDAQ traded cyber company “Cellebrite” (CLBT) allegedly engaged in illegal activities. Following this, The World Cyber Accountability Alliance published an official letter of concern to the global cybersecurity community.
“We are deeply alarmed by the corporate culture that is suggested to be occurring at Cellebrite as it was published by the media”, the Alliance says. “Alongside a lack of respect for a contract that was signed by the company, the lawsuit references and alleges several shareholders potentially sought to spy on several of the company’s major clients thus potentially breaking the law”
The lawsuit was filed by an Israeli-based strategy and crisis management firm called “The Free World”, owned by two Israeli nationals, David Spector and Racheli Goldblat, and has raised concerning allegations against both Haim Shani of IGP Fund and Yossi Carmil, CEO of Cellebrite. A deeper dive into the legal documents that were published reveals that unlike Chairman Haim Shani and CEO Yossi Carmil that may have not respected the merit of the contract, former Cellebrite CEO Ron Serber not only confirmed the validity of the contract in writing, but also vouched personally to ensure the payment if the court so orders.
The lawsuit entails a wide range of issues that are unsettling to say the least. The issues raised surround the behavior of shareholders, Cellebrite’s executives and specifically the actions of attorneys working for some of Israel’s top legal firms. For example, according to the lawsuit, Chairman Shani and the management team refused to disclose and report certain details to the SEC, regarding information in the lawsuit that they refer to as “confidential”, “sensitive” and even “bearing the potential to negatively impact the company’s share price”.
The World Cyber Accountability Alliance is:
- Alarmed by the claim that a significant and renowned company like Cellebrite allowed, allegedly, the abuse of the company’s proprietary offensive cyber intrusive technologies to be used for non-justified causes.
- Concerned by the fact that a company in our professional field is allegedly working in a way that is not compliant with regulations. We are specifically worried by the alleged breaching of a valid contract.
- Anxious by the relative ease with which a shareholder may, according to the lawsuit, direct and command managers, and employees to work against the law and license terms, and the consequences of such allegations on Cellebrite’s corporate policy and culture.
- Call on members of the alliance and the entire industry to enforce and, if necessary, re-install internal regulations that would assist in preventing similar cases in the future.