Technology with attitude

WhatsApp Security Issues: Cybercriminals Targeting Users with Spam Messages and Hoaxes

1

WhatsApp has become a part of our daily lives, thanks to its services as an instant messaging app for the Android and iOS users.

This app has eased the process of communication as the users can easily send messages as well as make voice calls to any person regardless of their global location.

As one of the most used messaging apps in the world right now, this app has become a platform for sharing almost everything, be it videos, music files, pictures or audio clips for free. As a result, WhatsApp has attracted a user base of more than 800 million people from all over the world.

There is no doubt that these people are here because of the good stuff this application has to offer. However, this huge presence has led to the emergence of cybercriminals who are targeting this huge and very vulnerable market.

What cybercriminals do to access to your WhatsApp account?

What happens is that these cybercriminals will usually circulate fake messages, where the users are invited to test a new feature of the app, for instance WhatsApp calling. In the process, these messages jam the phones with dangerous malwares which allow these criminals to earn illegal money.

Initially, the victim will find his or her number included in a special WhatsApp group and here, messages come together with links that ask for the feature to be downloaded. Users may at times find a phone number with details on the availability of emoticons, stickers and screensavers. These are the things these scammers use to lure their victims into this trap.

Once you click on the link, you will be redirected to some other websites where you will be asked to provide your phone number. This will subscribe you into a service which will also attract a connection fee that will be deducted from your balance. In addition, since you are subscribed to this service, you may end up bearing financial losses every other day as long as this service is running.

There are other cases where the users will receive an SMS after clicking on a download or continue link. The SMS will ask the user to reply to it in order to subscribe to the voice calling service or any other new feature of WhatsApp.

Messages come in form of spam and hoaxes

In most instances, those who use WhatsApp for making illegal money come up with spams and hoaxes, among other forms, to trick the users and prompt your action in some way.

The first precaution you should take is to avoid opening such unwanted messages. These messages may come from your friends or some other numbers you don’t know. So, try not to give out your personal info, especially finally data, phone numbers and others.

Stay vigilant!