Beware WhatsApp users, gold update message circulating online is a hoax
WhatsApp message warning users of a video containing malware is a hoax. Here’s everything you need to know about the “WhatsApp Gold” scam.
WhatsApp is the most popular messaging app but the platform is vulnerable to many scams as well. An old scam called "WhatsApp Gold" has made it back on WhatsApp through a message circulating online.
WhatsApp users on Twitter have been sharing a message they received which warns them about a virus. The scam is said to arrive in the form of a video claiming to be a new update for WhatsApp. The said video is however a scam called Martinelli and users are advised not to click on the link. Downloading the video will reportedly install a malware in the user's phone and hack it.
While this message appears to help users no fall prey to the scam, the video in question does not exist. According to fact-checking website Snopes, this video hoax is a hoax in itself with no existence of the video. In fact, no user has reported receiving the video. The report further notes that this incident first took place in 2017 in Spain.
This is doing the rounds again. Apparently tomorrow Whats App Gold will be a thing and screw your phone up. #WhatsAppGold #Martinelli #WhatsApp pic.twitter.com/4nHA4N07Xi— TechBuzz Ireland 👨💻 (@techbuzzinfo) January 2, 2019
Got this and am circulating just in case it's true.— Anna Moore (@5AMoores) January 3, 2019
FYI: Whatsapp Gold. A video will be launched tomorrow in Whatsapp called Martinelli. DO NOT OPEN it. Its a virus which goes into your phone and nothing will fix it. Do not update to Whatsapp Gold the virus is serious.
This WhatsApp scam turned out to be fake but users should still be careful about such messages. Any update to WhatsApp will be available through Google Play Store and Apple's App Store. Any other source can potentially harm your device with malwares. WhatsApp users should also be wary of such messages with the 'Forwarded' label.
WhatsApp rolled out a new feature to tackle fake news by labelling messages with the 'Forwarded' tag. The Facebook-owned company also limited forwarding messages to only five people.
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