Alert: Don't fall for fake 'WhatsApp Pink' app, warn cyber experts
The virus is sent as a link that claims to turn users’ WhatsApp pink and install new features.
Experts have warned users against a malicious link that claims to offer a pink version of users’ WhatsApp accounts, while adding new features.
In a tweet, Indian cybersecurity expert Rajshekhar Rajaharia warned that clicking on the link would cause users to lose "complete access" to their phones.
Beware of @WhatsApp Pink!! A Virus is being spread in #WhatsApp groups with an APK download link. Don't click any link with the name of WhatsApp Pink. Complete access to your phone will be lost. Share with All..#InfoSec #Virus @IndianCERT @internetfreedom @jackerhack @sanjg2k1 pic.twitter.com/KbbtK536F2— Rajshekhar Rajaharia (@rajaharia) April 17, 2021
Multiple users have been unknowingly sharing the link, masked as an official update from WhatsApp.
“Once installed, the fake WhatsApp app starts circulating a message that contains the link to download it. The aim of the hacker appears to be to collect user data of as many users as possible,” said Rajaharia, speaking to Gadgets 360.
Rajaharia added that WhatsApp Pink had largely been targeted at media persons and the police, with a link to download the app being initially sent to the police officers in Delhi and Rajasthan.
He was first informed of the virus by Delhi Police inspector Data Ram Yadav, who spotted the link circulating among some WhatsApp groups that had policemen.
According to a report in Financial Express, Jiten Jain, director of cyber intelligence firm Voyager Infosec, advised users to never install any Android Packages (APK) or apps that aren’t available on Apple’s App Store or Google’s Play Store.
“Such malicious apps can be used to compromise your phone and steal personal data like photos, SMS, contacts, etc. Keyboard-based malware can be used to track everything you type. It can be used to capture and steal banking passwords,” Jain said.
“The current case of Whatsapp Pink or [previous scam] Whatsapp Gold is also a case of malware impersonating as fake WhatsApp feature apps.”
When asked for a statement, WhatsApp said, “Anyone can get an unusual, uncharacteristic or suspicious message on any service, including email, and anytime that happens we strongly encourage everyone to use caution before responding or engaging.
"On WhatsApp in particular, we also recommend that people use the tools that we provide within the app to send us a report, report a contact or block a contact,” it added.
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