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Fraudsters trick WhatsApp users to gain access to account

27 Jan 2021 By ANIRBAN RAY

Just days after its confusing update alert, WhatsApp is drawing flak once again. This time around, the Facebook-owned platform is in the news as fraudsters try to trick WhatsApp users to gain access to their six-digit verification code, which is basically an OTP used by WhatsApp to log into an account. Providing anyone this OTP will result in your WhatsApp account being hacked.

Pervez Alam, a Bangladeshi expat who works in a printing press, said, “A few days ago, one of my close friends from Sinaw sent me a message saying that I need to resend an OTP he was sending me. I sent the number and in some time my WhatsApp started acting weird. Soon I could not send any messages to anyone.” 

The problem has been rampant in the sultanate and the neighbouring countries. 

Ayub Yaqoubi from Ghala added, “I panicked when my wife’s brother sent me a message asking me to send him some OTP, and without a second thought, I sent the number back to him only to be blocked out of WhatsApp. I blame the company for not taking ample steps to protect the privacy of users. One cannot trust these social media or communication tools these days.” 

The only solution to the problem is not to share any information with anyone. 

Tariq Hilal al Barwani, an IT expert, said, “No one wants to see a near and dear one in distress. One must remember that big companies never send personal messages and if anything similar happens, one must stay cool and call up that friend, colleague or relative and make sure it is a genuine matter. Once someone gets the OTP, they can gain access to your SIM card and hack your account.”


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