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Scammers duping people with fake WhatsApp service accounts

By: The Mobile Indian network, New Delhi Last updated : May 29, 2020 3:01 pm

People are getting messages claiming to be from WhatsApp's technical team and asking for OTP verification number.
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There's a new scam hitting the market and this time they are attacking your WhatsApp account. If any of you are getting random messages from people saying they are from WhatsApp technical team, delete those messages and block that account right away. This is the modus operandi used by scammers, who're making people share their one-time password for signing up with WhatsApp which is delivered via SMS. To make their profile look original, they use WhatsApp's photo for their profile picture, which deceives regular users, thinking these people are from WhatsApp. 

 

However, noted WhatsApp tipster WABetainfo explained through this tweet that WhatsApp will never reach out to users, especially asking for their sign-in OTP number. " WhatsApp doesn't message you on WhatsApp, and if they do (for global announcements, but it's soooo rare), a green verified indicator is visible. WhatsApp never asks your data or verification codes," the tweet mentions. 

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This ploy is being used by the scammer to gain access to a user's account. Getting hold of SMS verification code allows the attackers to impersonate the victim, and even deceive its listed contacts into sending money or other personal details. WhatsApp is a popular messaging tool, used by millions across the globe every month, and more than 400 million from India itself. Such cyber scams are becoming fairly common nowadays, and it's up to the individual to take precautions to make sure they don't fall into such trap. 

 

Even WhatsApp has clearly stated in its FAQ over here, "You should never share your WhatsApp verification code with others. If someone is trying to take over your account, they need the SMS verification code sent to your phone number to do so." Since mobile numbers are easily available through various databases, these attackers will try to verify numbers with numerous people, before they find the right victim profile. 

 

There are smart ways to protect your WhatsApp account from such scammers. You should enable two-factor authentication for your account, which ensures the attackers will have to convince you to share the code to gain access to the profile. To enable two-step verification, open WhatsApp, go to Settings, click on Account, and from there enable two-step verification for your profile on the app. 

 

Digital scams have increased over the past 12 months or so, with other platforms like Google Pay (used via UPI) and Paytm also observing similar incidents. At the end, it's better for the users to stay vigilant and don't engage with profiles claiming to be from either of there companies or unknown contacts. 

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Tags: WhatsApp scam two-factor authentication scammers OTP WhatsApp profile UPI scam

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