‘WhatsApp Gold’ feature, is a platform to hack your phone and fetch personal Data- Here is how you can do to keep you safe from the scam
The instant messaging platform WhatsApp is hit with yet another vulnerable malfunction which has surfaced in Australia and other countries. It is claimed that a forwarded message is sent across the users with a video named as ‘Martinelli’ which claims itself to be a Gold version of the App. It also asks its users to download the goal version to enjoy features which were not available in general and has been developed for celebrities.
Though reported in 2016, the hack was first surfaced to the mass users as “WhatsApp Gold” which was said to be downloaded through the app for further use. This time it has been in a form of a video in WhatsApp, named as ‘Martinelli’ which on downloading will bring malware and hack the phone within 10 seconds of viewing it. After which the phone cannot be recovered anyway.
However, Sophos a Cyber-security firm highlighted that users of the app are safe from the ‘Martinelli’ video as no such video that hacks user’s phone, exists. Further, they also suggested if there are any videos and links available for this app to download WhatsApp Gold, it should not be entertained. Sophos further warned users from resending forwarded message on WhatsApp, as this is the main cause for the circulation of fake messages to the users. Sophos later confirmed that WhatsApp Gold Scam message was in circulation for around 2 and a half years now, which says, recipients, a new version of WhatsApp is available for download which is used by celebrities, but now available for regular users.
From users claiming to receive message and video under the name of ‘Martinelli’ and Cyber-security firms claiming there is no such video in existence. Here’s how you can protect your Phone from Scam:
Trusted sources for download- the app itself or any update regarding the app should always be done from trusted sources. The only trusted source for Apple phones is Apple Store and Play Store for Android interphase. Any download or installation of a new app or feature should be strictly done by using such platforms. Any download from unknown sources can cause malfunction on your device leading to loss of personal data.
Do not Entertain Forwarded Message- it is advisable for uses no to entertain and further circulate any message on this mass messaging platform which comes with a level of ‘forwarded’. Mostly malicious messages are circulated in masses in this way. If we stop circulating such messages then we will be less vulnerable to such hacks.
Report Scam- if you see any message that you think to be a scam or abusive then there are options to block the sender and to report spam on the WhatsApp platform. Once reported the Cyber-security of WhatsApp will check the authenticity of the report. Users can find this feature by going to Settings > About and Help > Contact Us. Here, users can explain the situation along with screenshots for proof.
Feel Free to block Users on WhatsApp- WhatsApp gives you all the freedom to block any user whom you don’t want to communicate to and you suspect any hack from. At times we receive forwarded messages from unknown numbers. Do not entertain such messages and simply go ahead and block those users. To do this, open the chat and tap on the three dotted ‘menu’. Select the ‘more’ option and simply click on ‘block’.