Due to social distancing, the current pandemic has led to the surge in online activities. This rise in digitalization has increased the number of cyber scams. One such cyberattack targets WhatsApp accounts to gain access to users’ personal data.
WhatsApp cyberattack is widespread around the Christmas season
When users change their WhatsApp numbers and transfer their account, they receive an authentication code via SMS to the previous number. Cybercriminals first gain the users’ trust and then use this authentication SMS code to access the victim’s account. According to the experts, the recovery of an account is difficult in such cases. The only way to recover the account is by contacting WhatsApp directly and notifying them of account theft. WhatsApp will then cancel the account associated with the number.
To prevent accounts getting targeted by these cyberattacks, experts advise users to read the SMS carefully before taking any action. It is important to note that the application never asks for user’s details via WhatsApp messages, calls or text messages. Furthermore, users should not share the verification code with anyone. Individuals should also not open their WhatsApp accounts on shared networks or computers. Additionally, experts suggest to avoid replying to text messages from unknown numbers and to block them directly without responding or providing any private information.