comscore Beware! This WhatsApp scam lets hackers hijack your account using a phone call

WhatsApp scam: This scam lets hackers to hijack your account using a phone call

A new scam is attacking WhatsApp users wherein hackers can gain control of users' accounts using a simple phone call. Here's how this hack takes place.

WhatsApp Feature

Image: Pixabay

WhatsApp scams have become fairly common these days and hackers keep finding new ways of duping innocent WhatsApp users of giving up control of their accounts. Now, security researchers have detected a new scam that enables hackers to gain control of WhatsApp users’ accounts using a simple phone call. The new scam was highlighted by founder and CEO of CloudSEk, which is a contextual AI company that predicts cyber threats, Rahul Sasi. Also Read - Instagram, Messenger will soon get WhatsApp-like security feature: Check details

As victims get a call from hackers to call on numbers starting with ’67’ or ‘405’. Once they make the call, they are logged out of their WhatsApp accounts and hackers gain complete control of their accounts within seconds. Also Read - WhatsApp introduces three major privacy features for users: Check details

“First, you receive a call from the attacker who will convince you to make a call to the following number **67*<10 digit number> or *405*<10 digit number>. Within a few minutes, your WhatsApp would be logged out, and the attackers would get complete control of your account,” Sasi wrote in a post. Also Read - WhatsApp may soon allow users to hide number from specific groups: Details here

How does the WhatsApp hack work

As the CloudSEK founder explained, the number that victims dial is a service request for Jio and Airtel for ‘call forwarding’ for when your number is busy or engaged. This way they are able to forward victims’ calls to a number that they own. In the meantime, the attackers start the WhatsApp registration process and “choose the option to send OTP via a phone call.’ “Since your phone is engaged, the OTP will go to the attacker’s phone,” he said. This way, the attacker is able to gain access to victims’ accounts.

The security researcher says that this trick can also be used to hack into anyone’s WhatsApp account if a hacker has physical access to their phone and has permissions to make calls. “Every country and service provider has a similar service request number, so this trick works globally,” he added.

How do I protect myself

The best and the easiest way to not fall prey to this trick is by not responding to calls from unknown numbers or making calls to unknown numbers.

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  • Published Date: May 27, 2022 2:37 PM IST

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