Targeted Surveillance Attack on Whatsapp

Targeted Surveillance Attack on Whatsapp

The Facebook owned entity was recently a target of the
hackers who had the option to remotely install surveillance softwares on phones
and different devices utilizing a rather major vulnerability in the messaging
app.
The attack incorporated of attackers utilizing WhatsApp’s
voice calling function to ring a target’s device and regardless of whether the
call was not received or not, the surveillance software could be installed. As
per the Financial Times report which also speculates that the surveillance
software included was created by an Israeli firm NSO Group, the call would
frequently disappear from the device’s call log.
WhatsApp told the BBC its security team was the first to
recognize the flaw. It imparted that info with human rights groups, chose the
security vendors and the US Department of Justice prior this month.
“The attack has all the hallmarks of a private company
reportedly that works with governments to deliver spyware that takes over the
functions of mobile phone operating systems,” the company said on Monday in a
briefing document note for journalists.

WhatsApp said it was too soon to realize what number of
users had been affected by the vulnerability, in spite of the fact that it included
that the suspected attacks were exceptionally focused on. As indicated by the New York Times, one of the general populations
targeted on was a London-based lawyer associated with a claim against the NSO
Group.

Although a fix was “rolled out “on Friday, on Monday,
WhatsApp requested the majority of its 1.5 billion users to update their
applications as an additional precautionary measure.

Android

  1. Open the Google Play store
  2. Tap the menu at the top left of the screen
  3. Tap My Apps & Games
  4. If WhatsApp has recently been updated, it will appear in the
    list of apps with a button that says Open
  5. If WhatsApp has not been automatically updated, the button
    will say Update. Tap Update to install the new version
  6. The latest version of WhatsApp on Android is 2.19.134

iOS

  1. Open the App Store
  2. At the bottom of the screen, tap Updates
  3. If WhatsApp has recently been updated, it will appear in the
    list of apps with a button that says Open
  4. If WhatsApp has not been automatically updated, the button
    will say Update. Tap Update to install the new version
  5. The latest version of WhatsApp on iOS is 2.19.51

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