WhatsApp is the most popular instant messaging platform that is used by almost every smartphone user. The service has reached a user base of over one billion users early this year.
The fame that WhatsApp has achieved comes with downfalls as well. By saying downfall, we mean the scams that are going around keeping WhatsApp as the base.
In simple words, WhatsApp is a honey trap for the scammers. They just con a small fraction of the billion users of WhatsApp to earn good money. Fraudsters use WhatsApp to persuade users to hand over sensitive information that can be used for identity thefts such as address and name.
Identity theft is common in many fields and not only WhatsApp. There are other scams targeted on the users of the instant messaging services and these include installation of malicious software on the users' phones to collect sensitive details for sinister uses.
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The other type of scam that is going on is charging the WhatsApp users for the services that are supposed to be free. With the rising number of frauds that are happening, the WhatsApp users should know the common ones so that they stay away from the bait.
Here are some common WhatsApp scams that you need to be aware of so that you do not fall into the trap.
WhatsApp Gold doesn't exist
WhatsApp Gold version is making rounds on the internet. This version is claimed to be a special one that is used by celebrities. It is stated to be an invite-only platform where you can be a friend of your favorite movie star.
Users are getting messages that WhatsApp Gold is an exclusive platform with special features. It is said that users can send over 100 photos at the same time, delete messages that are sent by mistake, and so on.
Users are urged to upgrade to WhatsApp Gold, but there is no such app in any of the official app stores. Earlier, WhatsApp Plus scam was going on. It was claimed to let users send files such as videos, photos, and files of unlimited size.
WhatsApp Voice Calls Invitation is Fake!
WhatsApp introduced the voice calls feature a few months back. With the arrival of this feature came many fraudsters. Millions of WhatsApp users were waiting for the invitations to get the WhatsApp voice calls feature.
This was the time for the cyber criminals to distribute malware through a link and send it as an invitation to the users for the activation of the feature. When the users clicked on the link, the malware got downloaded on their phones.
Voicemails were another scam
Some users were conned through voicemails on WhatsApp. The scammers trick the users by creating a picture that they have received a voicemail along with a large Listen button that they might click to hear the message.
The button will not reveal the mystery caller, but lead the users to a dodgy website that will try to install malware on the phone. Remember that genuine WhatsApp messages will be delivered within the app itself.
Don't be lured by freebies
Who doesn't like freebies? This is what the scammers have taken advantage of. Many scammers send WhatsApp messages such as get some free products or free talk time along with a link.
Once the users click on the link, they will be redirected to a website that will download malware and install the same on their phones to fetch the sensitive details.
WhatsApp Spy app isn't genuine
You might have stumbled across some WhatsApp Spy apps that will let you take a look at what your friends and colleagues send and receive on the platform.
Before you plan to download such an app, keep in mind that there is no way to know what others are sending on WhatsApp. Any link claiming to direct you to a Spy app will urge you to subscribe to a paid messaging service.