WhatsApp warning: what is phone call scam that lets cybercriminals take over your account - and how to avoid
Victims of this scam are instructed to dial a number from their phone
Cybersecurity experts are warning WhatsApp users about a new scam which allows criminals to take over your account.
The scam allows hackers to access your WhatsApp account without being detected by the user.
This vulnerability was uncovered by cybersecurity forecast company CloudSEK’s founder, Rahul Sasi.
He shared the warning on a Facebook post, the Times of India reported.
How is the scam carried out?
Hackers call a WhatsApp user and prompt them to dial another number.
This number goes to a service request line for the user’s mobile service provider and triggers a call forwarding feature.
With this feature, the user inadvertently forwards their calls to the hacker’s number.
Then the user is automatically logged out from WhatsApp. According to Sasi, this means it’s “game over”.
Now the hacker is able to direct the WhatsApp registration steps on their own phone and can control the account.
What did Sasi say?
In his Facebook post, Sasi said: “The same trick can be used to hack anyone’s WhatsApp account if the attacker has physical access to your phone and has permission to make a call
“Every country and service provider has a similar service request number, so this trick works globally.”
How to avoid being a victim of this scam?
Scammers will also try and contact you out of the blue, and try to invoke a sense of urgency.
Avoid being rushed into anything and don’t make calls to unknown numbers.
If you know about the scam, report them on WhatsApp via settings, and report to Action Fraud.