WhatsApp advises users to upgrade app after report of spyware attack
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Facebook’s WhatsApp on Tuesday advised users to upgrade to the present day version of its popular messaging app following a report that customers could be inclined to having malicious adware installed on phones without their knowledge.
“WhatsApp encourages people to upgrade to the latest version of our app, as well as keep their mobile operating system up to date, to protect against potential targeted exploits designed to compromise information stored on mobile devices,” a spokesman said.
“We are continuously working alongside industry partners to grant the contemporary security enhancements to assist defend our users.”
The Financial Times reported that a vulnerability in WhatsApp allowed attackers to inject spyware on telephones by using ringing up aims the use of the app’s telephone call function. It stated the spyware was developed by means of Israeli cyber surveillance company NSO Group.
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Asked about the report, NSO stated its technology is licensed to authorized government agencies “for the sole purpose of fighting crime and terror,” and that it does not function the system itself.
“We investigate any credible allegations of misuse and if necessary, we take action, including shutting down the system. Under no circumstances would NSO be involved in the operating or identifying of targets of its technology, which is solely operated by intelligence and law enforcement agencies,” the company said.