WhatsApp calling allowed hackers to load spyware on Android and iOS phones

The issues will soon be fixed by the company.

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WhatsApp and Israeli software developer NSO group have confirmed that an exploit within the popular messaging app allowed hackers to load NSO's Pegasus spyware on to Android and iOS devices during voice calls using the app.

WhatsApp calling allowed hackers to load spyware on Android and iOS

 

The tool is capable of effecting the device even if the user didn't answer the call. Besides, the malicious calls would frequently disappear from the call logs. Pegasus can also access the camera and mic of the device and gather message and location information of the user.

While the hackers haven't been identified, a Middle Eastern country is under suspicion. There was a failed attempt to hack a human rights lawyer's phone on May 12. The lawyer helped a Saudi dissident in Canada.

"Under no circumstances would NSO be involved in the operating or identifying of targets of its technology," WhatsApp said. The company also rolled out a server-side fix on May 10 and released patches for its apps on May 13.

Besides, WhatsApp is bringing new features for the users ensuring better privacy than ever before. It is testing new message forwarding features on the latest Android beta version.

This feature allows users to decide if they want to receive frequently forwarded messages in a group chat. This is ideal for annoying messages for many members of the group.

Another feature in the testing phase is a privacy-centric function. The company is said to be working on a feature that will stop users from capturing a screenshot within the app.

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