Beware of WhatsApp account hacking! Police raise fraud alert | Tech News

Beware of WhatsApp account hacking! Police raise fraud alert

New cyber scam alert! Cybercriminals are hacking WhatsApp accounts and the Kolkata Police have warned the general public to be alert after two cases were reported in the city.

| Updated on: Jul 26 2023, 10:47 IST
Kolata police issued a warning regarding the WhatsApp account hacking scam. Read to know more. (Pexels)

After complaints from a student and businessman were filed about a WhatsApp account hacking fraud, the Kolkata Police have warned the general public to be more careful when they are online. These scammers have come up with new tricks and the growing number of cyber scams has now become a big concern. In the digital age, it is increasingly difficult to identify if we are being scammed or if someone is watching us through our devices or whether they are planning to steal our money.

The Kolkata Police have issued a warning to WhatsApp users about the latest scam. According to a Gadgets Now report, the scam started on Facebook Messenger, where the scammer impersonates someone and contacts their friends.

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The Kolkata Police shared the news from their Facebook handle with a screenshot saying, "WhatsApp Getting Hacked! If you receive this kind of message and if any person on your WhatsApp contacts list (even if known) asks you to forward the same, please don't do so. Fraudsters are using this to take control of your WhatsApp account. We have received a few such complaints and seek your cooperation.” The police asked netizens to forward such kind of messages to them so the fraudsters can be tracked.

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How the scam takes place

According to the investigating officer, these fraudsters contact people from the victims' friends list and ask them to join their yoga classes. They send a link, urging recipients to click and ask to enter a six-digit OTP code. Once entered, the scammer takes over the WhatsApp account using another device.

The OTP is originally the WhatsApp verification code. As soon as they access the WhatsApp account from another device, the user loses access. The fraudster then impersonates the victim's identity and requests money from their contacts, often claiming there is an emergency. They even promise that the amount will be repaid.

The hacked account is also utilized for other scamming activities. In some cases, the accused may fool their victims into investing in cryptocurrency to regain their WhatsApp account access.

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First Published Date: 26 Jul, 10:47 IST