- WhatsApp OTP scam has raised privacy concerns in India.
- WhatsApp OTP scam involves a hacker pretending to be your friend.
- You can secure your WhatsApp account with biometric and 2-factor authentication.
WhatsApp is the most popular messaging service in India, so much so that “texting” has almost become synonymous with the Facebook-owned app. But a recent scam has raised privacy concerns in the country. Being termed the ‘WhatsApp OTP scam’ informally, it involves hacking into someone’s WhatsApp account and getting access to their personal chats, photos, and videos. The WhatsApp OTP scam is on the rise in India, with several users reporting security breaches with their accounts. So, what is the WhatsApp OTP scam and how can you protect yourself from it? Let’s find out.
What is the WhatsApp OTP scam?
According to several user reports, the WhatsApp OTP scam involves a hacker pretending to be your friend. They will send you a text describing some sort of emergency, prompting you for help. Next, they will send a WhatsApp OTP to your number and ask for you to send it. If you send that OTP in the chat, your WhatsApp number will get logged out from your smartphone and all your personal information will be accessible to the hacker.
How is this possible?
When you switch to a new smartphone, you need to install WhatsApp and enter your phone number so that you receive an OTP/ security code to log in to your account. In the same way, the hacker initiates a login from your phone number on their device and is able to access your chats once you forward the OTP to them.
ESSENTIALLY, THIS IS LESS OF A TECHNICAL AND MORE OF A SOCIAL HACK PERPETRATED BY CRIMINALS ONLINE.
How dangerous is it?
WhatsApp is the most frequented app for a lot of us today. We use it to share intimate moments with partners, family, and friends. We also use WhatsApp to communicate with colleagues at work. Despite the fact that WhatsApp is an end-to-end encrypted messaging app, it is impossible to cover the act of unknowingly giving access to a stranger under the security features.
THE HACKER CAN ACCESS YOUR PERSONAL IMAGES AND VIDEOS AND POST THEM PUBLICLY WITHOUT YOUR KNOWLEDGE.