IS THERE MALWARE HIDDEN IN YOUR WHATSAPP APPLICATION?

Regardless of how many wars these Smartphone brands have been involved in, there is no denying the fact that Android is still the most used operating system across the globe. Its accessibility, ease of use, and cost-effectiveness make it a very popular choice among retailers and users alike, and clearly, they are doing something right considering they have over 2.5 billion active users each month on average.

The Android brand continues to grow and evolve even today; expanding its operations and incorporating even more features and capabilities into the operating system. But while the increasing popularity bodes well for the brand, it also puts them at significant risk. With such a high number of average monthly users, hackers usually turn to exploit vulnerabilities in Android smartphones and devices.

As a result of these hacking attempts, over 25 million android phones and devices were left in a compromising position just last year in 2019 when a malware hid itself in the WhatsApp application and was discovered a bit too late.

HOW DID THIS HIDDEN MALWARE WORK?

If the user were to download an unsafe application or tool from the Play Store that was laced with this malware, it would attach itself to the system by disguising as a Google update tool that, on first look, would not look suspicious. Since there would be no update notification on the screen, the phone user would have no idea about this hidden malware. After the malware has installed itself completely, it will usually replace actual, authentic applications on your phone, most commonly WhatsApp.

WhatsApp is arguably the internet’s most commonly and frequently used communication tool. Even if you use it every day, you may be oblivious to the fact that anything has changed- except for the fact that you will start receiving bad advertisements when you use WhatsApp. This is not just limited to WhatsApp, it could extend to any other application on your phone. The aim of the hackers is to make you click on these ads so they can generate revenue from your clicks. Due to the silent and stealthy nature of this hidden WhatsApp malware, it is also sometimes referred to as Agent Smith.

PROTECTING YOUR PHONE FROM SUCH MALWARE

To make sure that you do not fall victim to this hidden malware, always be on the lookout for strange ads or activity on your WhatsApp application. Avoid downloading any suspicious application from the Play Store and uninstall any illegitimate ones that you have already downloaded. Another great way to keep your data safe is to invest in antivirus and antimalware solutions like McAfee.com/activate Mobile Security that will keep your Android smartphone protected from such threats.

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