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Downloaded 'WhatsApp Pink'? Here's how to get rid of the malware and fix your device

The logo for Facebook Inc. WhatsApp messaging app. The logo for Facebook Inc. WhatsApp messaging app.
The logo for Facebook Inc. WhatsApp messaging app. (Bloomberg)

Using the modified version of any app that is released by an unknown developer is a huge security risk, especially when it has been spread over a medium like WhatsApp where users ‘trust’ forwards.

Over the weekend, a WhatsApp forward began to do the rounds informing innocent users that they would be able to use a pink theme on the popular encrypted messenger app, instead of the default user. The “WhatsApp Pink” app, which turned out to be malware, does apparently change the app’s theme but at the cost of their personal information.

Also read: Link claiming to change WhatsApp theme to pink is a virus, do not click

We reported on Monday that security researcher Rajshekhar Rajaharia was one of the first users to alert users via Twitter that the Android Application Package (APK) spreading on several WhatsApp groups is actually a virus. “..Don't click any link with the name of #WhatsappPink. Complete access to your phone will be lost," said Rajaharia.

Using the modified version of any app that is released by an unknown developer is a huge security risk, especially when it has been spread over a medium like WhatsApp where users ‘trust’ forwards. Apps like WhatsApp ask for permissions like access to the device’s storage, cameras, microphone, contacts and so on --- a user who has installed a shady app like ‘WhatsApp Pink’ is likely to agree to grant the same permissions to the malware as well.

Also read: Don’t fall for this WhatsApp message, it’s a scam!

In any case, in the unfortunate event that you or someone you know happened to install the WhatsApp Pink malware, removing it is not a very difficult task. According to Rajaharia, users who have the app on their phone should first unlink all WhatsApp Web devices connected to the WhatsApp Pink app, then uninstall the app itself from their Android phones. They must then clear their browser caches and take a look at all the apps installed on their devices to check for any permissions granted to suspicious apps and remove them.

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