Be careful, a new text bomb is making WhatsApp crash and will hang your phone
There is no temporary solution and WhatsApp users are advised to not open and read messages from unknown contacts
WhatsApp has been the target of many hackers in the past who have used or tried to use, the app to break into people's phones to steal information or causing them to crash and hang. The latest in that line of attacks are happening right now, reported the Deccan Herald.
WABetaInfo shared a tweet recently asking people to share ideas for new WhatsApp features for both iOS and Android.
-Anti crash integrated into official WhatsApp: There are messages designed to freeze or crash your WhatsApp. Then there are modded WhatsApp versions that have a “Crashcode protection” like a bigger Unicode database. We need this integrated into the official application. pic.twitter.com/bpyWtFUwQO— Ian (@Ian_Oli_01) August 15, 2020
A user with the handle @Ian_Oli_01 responded to that tweet with two screenshots and a message that reads - “Anti crash integrated into official WhatsApp: There are messages designed to freeze or crash your WhatsApp. Then there are modded WhatsApp versions that have a ‘Crashcode protection' like a bigger Unicode database. We need this integrated into the official application.”
WABetaInfo responded to this tweet with - “I raised this issue some weeks ago. My followers told that this is called "Binario", "Contact bombs", "Trava Zap", "Crashers" or simply "message/vcard crash". It's very complicated to explain, but these messages can crash WhatsApp every time you open the app.”
I raised this issue some weeks ago. My followers told that this is called "Binario", "Contact bombs", "Trava Zap", "Crashers" or simply "message/vcard crash".— WABetaInfo (@WABetaInfo) August 16, 2020
It's very complicated to explain, but these messages can crash WhatsApp every time you open the app. https://t.co/yhOn8OymIF
This is essentially a text bomb that has originated in Brazil and is prevalent there. According to reports, this started in mid-August and has now spread to other regions globally.
The text bomb contains a series of randomly placed special characters and is not legible in terms of meaning or design of any sort.
The app itself fails to comprehend the meaning of the message and that's what is causing WhatsApp to crash every time it gets one of these messages. Even if you close the app and try opening it again, it causes the phone to hang making it inoperable.
There is no solution to this right now and WhatsApp is yet to respond to this. For now, users are being advised to not open messages from unknown numbers and contacts.
As an added layer of protection, you can go to your Settings, click on Privacy, then click on Groups and change “Who can add me to groups” from ‘Everyone' to ‘My Contacts'. This will prevent random people you do not know from adding you to groups and dropping this text bomb into the chat there.
“WhatsApp has released and already begun rolling out a patch that addresses this in its latest iOS software update. As with any tech product, we strongly encourage users to keep their WhatsApp app and mobile operating system up to date and download updates whenever they're available,” a WhatsApp spokesperson said.