New WhatsApp threat means hackers could intercept your messages and change what they say
Cybersecurity firm Checkpoint has uncovered what could be the most shocking WhatsApp vulnerability we’ve ever seen. If exploited, it would allow hackers to intercept your private chats, both personal and group messages, and change them. It allows hackers to pretend to be you and say whatever they want.
Imagine your friends getting a sexist or racist message from you; only it wasn’t you who said it. How about asking somebody out on a date, and although they replied yes, you read no. The diabolical possibilities this weakness opens up are endless and terrifying.
As well as changing the content of chat messages, the vulnerability also allows the manipulation of what people receive. For example, a member of a group could think a message has been read by the whole group, when he alone has received it.
The real bad news is that there is no quick technological fix to this issue. Fortunately, however, we have a secret weapon in our battle against the potential impersonators. As always, our best weapon of defense is our common sense. If you receive a message that seems a little strange, pause and consider it before reacting; if something seems out of the ordinary maybe something is wrong. This would also be a good time to confirm the response via another messaging service like the ones below.
We don’t recommend, however, messaging people you’re asking out on dates across multiple messaging platforms; if you’ve been rebuked on one of them. Again, common sense is your ally.