This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
On Monday, WhatsApp — a messaging app owned by Facebook and used by many travelers to communicate internationally — announced a cybersecurity breach that left many of its smartphone users vulnerable to malicious spyware.
CNN reported that the encrypted messaging app has since fixed the vulnerability, preventing any hackers from further exploiting the system. Hackers allegedly breach users’ smartphones by implanting spyware through placing a phone call to them on WhatsApp. The malicious code could be transmitted despite if the app user accepted the call or not.
No official perpetrator has been named yet, but investigators found that one of the targeted victims of the hacking scheme was a British human rights lawyer. The Financial Times reported that the spyware was developed by an Israeli cyber surveillance company called NSO Group — but they have since refuted the claims.
The situation is currently under investigation, but Whatsapp is urging its users to update the app as soon as possible out of an “abundance of caution.” The app can be updated on the iPhone by visiting the App Store and selecting updates — WhatsApp should be listed there. Android users are advised to open the Play Store and tap on the three lines in the top left corner, select “My apps & games” from the menu and then update WhatsApp from there.
Featured image by Chesnot/Getty Images.
Know before you go.
News and deals straight to your inbox every day.
NEW INCREASED OFFER: 60,000 Points
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION: $1,200
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- No foreign transaction fees
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
- No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards