What to do if hackers access your photos and videos via WhatsApp

Cyber experts have discovered a security hole in the WhatsApp messaging app that allows hackers to take over your entire account and even send messages on your behalf.

What’s more, the leak will enable people with bad intentions to view and distribute your photos, videos, or other files. If you have WhatsApp on your iPhone, please update the app as soon as possible.

Thanks to end-to-end encryption, it is basically impossible for hackers to read your WhatsApp messages. But experts from cybersecurity company PerimeterX have found several weaknesses in the app. By allowing users to click on infected links in WhatsApp messages, hackers can gain access to your account.

The security vulnerability allows hackers to send messages in your name or access and distribute all your stored files. Sensitive photos, videos, and conversations, as well as passwords, are easy to grab. “One of the most commonly used message apps is not as safe as we thought,” warns PerimeterX.

Am I in danger?

Only people using WhatsApp on desktop (PC and Mac) and the iPhone are in danger. Those who only use WhatsApp on iPhone should not worry. Android users are not at risk either.

What can I do?

If you use WhatsApp on both desktop and iPhone, it is best to update the app as soon as possible, both on your iPhone and your computer. The security breach was already closed in December, but without an update, you are still vulnerable to hackers. Make sure you are working with the latest version of the app.

That’s how you outsmart hackers

Don’t just click on unknown or suspicious links in WhatsApp. This is how you recognize malicious links:

• Messages that look more like a piece of code than regular text.
• A malicious message only works if it contains the text ‘javascript’. So be aware when that word appears.
• Do not click on a link in a message from an unknown sender.
• Also, be wary if the link has a preview because they too can be malicious. Only open a link if it comes from a reliable source.

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