New WhatsApp Scam Can Hijack And Delete Your Account

Pappi Hex

WhatsApp is the most popular messaging and one of the most downloaded apps in the world. While it's known for its privacy features and free worldwide web calling, it is also known to contain cybercriminals and scammers who from time to time hack unsuspecting users' accounts to steal data, and even delete accounts.

When you hear incidents of WhatsApp account hack you begin to question yourself if the WhatsApp messaging platform is safe? Yes, WhatsApp itself is safe. They provide end-to-end protection encryption for chats and calls.

Other than that, there are cybercriminals and scammers on the platform with different ploys to hijack accounts, steal cash, data, and other valuable content, with the most frequently performed hack being the takeover and deleting of WhatsApp accounts.

How does this work?

The hacker sends a message to the target on WhatsApp, while impersonating a WhatsApp technical support staff, telling the target that "someone has recently registered a WhatsApp account with their number" and they cannot determine if the login is legitimate. 

The message will then add that for the WhatsApp Team to investigate such an alert caused by suspicious login activity, the user will have to verify.

According to Panda Security, a text message with a six-digit verification code will then be sent to the target's phone. The hacker will then send another message to the target.

"We have sent you an identity verification request to verify root [SMS]. Failure to pass the verification process or to abandon the attempt will result in an indefinite suspension," the message reads. 

The hacker will then ask the target to send the code or click on the SMS, and will then in turn hijack and take control of the account, and could as well delete the account if they wanted to.

Dangers Associated With Hacked WhatsApp Accounts

Once your WhatsApp account has been hacked, the hacker can do the following:
  • Will remain in your group chats where they could see sensitive information and as well impersonate you.
  • Message your friends and family members, while pretending to be you.
  • Access your conversation and take personal information
  • Scam your contacts for money while pretending to be you
  • Have access to your contact list (including those in groups)
  • With access to your phone's contact numbers, the hacker can try the same six-digit code hack on the contacts
How To Stay Safe From WhatsApp Hackers/Scammers

WhatsApp advises users to never give a password or SMS security code to anyone. That is, including friends and family. If the request appears to come from a genuine friend then it's very likely the account has been hijacked.

Also, if you receive a message from one of your contacts asking for money. If in doubt, place a call to the contact to check if it's genuine.

If you receive a six-digit verification SMS when you didn't initiate the request, then it could be a scammer trying to log in to your account.

Enable two-step verification for an extra layer of protection

"The safety and security of you and your messages matter to us. We want you to know about the tools and features we've designed to help you stay safe while using WhatsApp," WhatsApp said.

For more on how to keep your account safe from hackers and cybercriminals, WhatsApp has a guide to put you through

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