Whatsapp Scam – How to avoid the Whatsapp Six-Digit Verification Scam
WhatsApp is a popular messaging app that’s used around the world, but lately it’s been the target of scammers who try to get your data via a process known as ‘the WhatsApp Scam’
Being informed is still the best way to avoid getting tricked, so here’s a short guide on the WhatsApp verification code scam and how it works.
What is the WhatsApp Scam?
By default, WhatsApp users are protected by what’s called a ‘two step authentication’, where they need to enter their account password, then a six digit code that’s sent only to their phone number.
Unless you share the 6-digit code, or the WhatsApp code then there’s no way a scammer can get to your data or private information. Another way they can get to your WhatsApp account is when they somehow physically get hold of your smartphone and it’s unlocked.
The WhatsApp scam starts when a hacker posing as a friend sends you a message, saying that they made a mistake and the 6 digit code was sent to you. They will then ask you to ‘pass’ the code to them so they can continue.
Those who are not aware of the scam will then try to help and send the 6 digit code as it appears on their app. Once this happens the hacker will then be able to access the account and everything in it.
How Do You Stop the WhatsApp Scam?
First of all, being aware that there’s a scam involving WhatsApp is one way to prevent it from happening to you.
Then, you should know that WhatsApp will only ask you for the six-digit verification code when you’re setting up your account or verifying your number, which only happens at the start of using the messaging app.
It’s easy to get fooled by the scam because at first glance you’ll see it’s coming from a friend or an acquaintance you know. However, it’s most likely a compromised account that has reached out to all its contact list in an effort to obtain more WhatsApp accounts (and its data).
Whenever you receive a message like this, stop and think- did I recently request for the authentication code to be sent to me? If not, then it’s most probably a scam taking place.
WhatsApp messages from friends you haven’t heard from is nothing extraordinary. They could be wondering how you’ve been, or they could just be checking up on you. They could even be looking for a catch-up and invite you out for a quick lunch.
However, asking for a sensitive information such as the WhatsApp code is unusual and warrants suspicion. WhatsApp says that you shouldn’t share this code with others, even if they’re your ‘friends’.
Enhance Your WhatsApp Security…
Practice protective measures on your WhatsApp app and you’ll be safe even when targeted with the WhatsApp scam.
You can enable two step verification by going to the WhatsApp settings, or changing your password every now and then so your account won’t be compromised. Then, inform your friend by calling that his or her WhatsApp account may be hacked.