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Watch Out for WhatsApp Scams

WhatsApp has been in the news lately. That can make it a popular target for scams. Here’s a little background. WhatsApp offers a text-messaging service for mobile platforms. Users of the service can also send voice messages. They’ve just announced that they will be adding voice communications this spring.

Fake WhatsApp emails state that you have a new voice message. The link in the message takes you to a malicious website that tries to get you to download malware. The type of malware depends on the device you use to visit the site – mobile devices, PCs, Mac. Don’t click on the link, even if you are a WhatsApp user. WhatsApp doesn’t send voice mail notifications by email.

Another fake email claims that a WhatsApp version is now available for desktop PCs and Macs. The link in this message doesn’t download the desktop version, it downloads malware that will steal user names and passwords for online accounts. Don’t click on the link - there isn’t a desktop version.

Protect yourself from these and other scams by following these tips.

  • Familiarize yourself with an app and understand how it will communicate with you.
  • Use security features provided by your mobile device. Use security software on all of your devices.
  • Make sure you determine the source of a link, file or app and make sure that it is trustworthy before you click or download it.