Can Someone Hack my WhatsApp Account and Chat without my phone?
Over two billion people regularly use WhatsApp, making it the most widely used messaging service in the world. As the number of people using the internet grows, so does the likelihood of cyber assaults and hacking attempts.
The danger of an unauthorised third party gaining access to and making use of your WhatsApp account is a major cause for concern. In this article, we’ll discuss the many vectors for WhatsApp account compromise and the measures you may take to secure your data. Whether you’re just a casual user or a working professional, it’s important to know how to keep your WhatsApp account safe.
Risks of WhatsApp Getting Hacked
So, if your WhatsApp account gets compromised, what should you do? Even though WhatsApp can only be hacked to a limited level, we don’t need to remind you how damaging hacking may be.
When your phone is compromised, the hacker can see when you use WhatsApp, your sleeping patterns, internet activities, etc. Hackers can access your WhatsApp data through various methods, including using the WhatsApp web interface or registering your phone number on another device.
Although WhatsApp cannot be used on two phones simultaneously, hackers may simply access all of your messages, even confidential ones, if they register your phone number on another device.
Hackers may view your WhatsApp chat by scanning your QR code from anywhere in the world. However, in order to view the QR code, hackers must have physical access to your phone.
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How to Know if Someone is hacking Your WhatsApp Account and Chats?
Go to the three dots in the upper right corner of your WhatsApp window to see if your WhatsApp web is active on an unfamiliar device. Check the list of all open sessions on WhatsApp Web. This will show you all of the devices that are linked to your WhatsApp account.
If you see the notice “This phone could not be authenticated,” it signifies that an unfamiliar device has also accessed your WhatsApp account.
Hackers can also use third-party software to listen in on your WhatsApp conversations available on the internet.
WhatsApp is a simple application to use. Unfortunately, spotting an intruder who isn’t interacting with the program might be difficult. This is most likely someone who only wants to listen in on your talks, although some hackers also want to take control of your account.
We’ll utilise this part to educate you on various warning signals that someone is in your account, regardless of their intentions.
Check Your WhatsApp Activity; if anything seems unusual
When you start WhatsApp, the first thing you’ll notice is a list of messages. Look through this list for messages you didn’t send or messages from individuals you don’t know. If there is some message or activity that you don’t recognise it is a red flag that your WhatsApp account might have been hacked.
Check your Contact List and New Messages
If someone tries to take over your account, they’ll change your contact information. Tap the “vertical ellipsis” (three vertical dots) in the top right-hand corner on a mobile device.
- Select “Settings” from the drop-down menu.
- At the top of the menu, select “profile.”
- Examine Your Personal Information to ensure that it is correct and up-to-date.
You’ll need to safeguard your account if anything has changed or if there is information that you don’t recognise. Using two-step verification, continue the procedures in the next section.
Check for Unknown Contact Messages
On iPhone, type “WhatsApp” in the “search bar” at the top, or use the “magnifying glass” on Android to search your messages. Keep an eye out for communications regarding account modifications or access.
Check for Linked Devices on WhatsApp
By pressing the “vertical ellipsis” (three vertical dots) menu icon, you can view the most recent or open session.
Select “Linked Devices” from the drop-down menu.
Look through the “Last active…” list for any unidentified devices.
If you come across an unfamiliar gadget, press it and choose “Log Out.”
Unlike other services, you can only examine your WhatsApp login activity by following the outlined methods.
Check for New Unknown Friends on WhatsApp
Open WhatsApp and tap on the “conversation” button in the lower right-hand corner to go through your contacts. Verify that the list does not contain any new or unfamiliar friends.
How can Someone Hack my WhatsApp Account? What are some possible ways?
Here are some possible ways that someone can hack your WhatsApp account.
Using 3rd Party Apps on Your Device
You’d be astonished at how many paid legal programs have appeared on the market exclusively to break into security systems. This might be done by large firms collaborating with authoritarian governments to target activists and journalists or by hackers looking to steal your personal data.
Spyzie and mSPY are two apps that may easily break into your WhatsApp account and steal your personal information. All you have to do now is buy the app, install it, and turn it on on the target phone. Finally, you can sit back and use your web browser to access your app dashboard and spy on private WhatsApp data such as messages, contacts, and status updates. However, we strongly caution against anybody doing so!
Remote Code Execution via GIF
Awakened, a security researcher, discovered a vulnerability in WhatsApp in October 2019 that allowed hackers to take control of the service using a GIF picture. When a user enters the Gallery view to share a media file, the hack takes advantage of WhatsApp handles photos.
The program parses the GIF and displays a file preview when this happens. GIF files are unique in that they include many encoded frames. As a result, code may be buried within a picture.
A hacker might compromise a user’s complete conversation history by sending a malicious GIF to them. The hackers would be able to see who the user was texting and what they were saying. Users’ data, images, and videos sent using WhatsApp were also visible.
On Android 8.1 and 9, the issue impacted versions of WhatsApp up to 2.19.230. Fortunately, Awakened responsibly notified the vulnerability, and Facebook, which owns WhatsApp, promptly addressed the problem. To avoid this problem, make sure WhatsApp is updated to version 2.19.244 or higher.
Using Social Media
Socially designed assaults are another method WhatsApp may be exploited. These take advantage of human psychology in order to steal data or propagate falsehoods.
Check Point Research, a security organisation, uncovered one such assault called FakesApp. People were able to abuse the quotation tool in a group chat and change the wording of another person’s reply due to this. Hackers might, in essence, plant phony messages that appear to come from other authorised users.
This might be accomplished by decrypting WhatsApp messages. They were able to see data exchanged between WhatsApp’s mobile and web versions as a result of this. They might then adjust values in group conversations from here. They may then mimic others and transmit communications that look to come from them.
The Pegasus attack is a powerful spyware developed by NSO Group, an Israeli cyber intelligence outfit. It is intended to infect mobile devices such as iPhones and Androids and obtain access to sensitive data such as messages, images, and contacts.
Once installed, the spyware can run in stealth mode and monitor the user’s activity without their knowledge. This gives the attacker access to sensitive information such as login credentials, financial information, and personal conversations.
One of the most notable ways Pegasus can be used to hack WhatsApp is via taking advantage of a flaw in the messaging app’s Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) capability. This exploit allows attackers to make a call to the target device even if the user does not answer.
Pegasus is able to enter the smartphone and acquire access to the user’s WhatsApp data, including chat history, voice messages, and other sensitive information, during the call. This information can subsequently be used for malevolent objectives such as identity theft, money fraud, and other cybercrimes by attackers.
The Pegasus cyber-espionage campaign has targeted a number of high-profile targets, including journalists, activists, and government officials, raising worries about the growing threat of state-sponsored cyber-espionage. The use of sophisticated spyware such as Pegasus underscores the need for increased cybersecurity measures to protect against these types of attacks, both at the individual and organisational levels.
Android, iOS, Windows 10 Mobile, and Tizen devices were all affected by this vulnerability. The Israeli corporation NSO Group, accused of spying on Amnesty International personnel and other human rights advocates, utilised it. WhatsApp was modified to protect itself against this assault once the news of the breach became public. If your WhatsApp app is older than version 2.19.134 on Android or version 2.19.51 on iOS, you should upgrade it right now.
Media File Attack
Both WhatsApp and Telegram are affected by Media File Jacking. This exploit takes advantage of how apps receive and write media items such as images and movies to the device’s external storage.
The assault begins with installing malware concealed within a seemingly innocent program. This may then be used to keep an eye on incoming Telegram or WhatsApp files. The virus might replace the original with a phony when a new file is received. The firm that found the problem, Symantec, believes it may be exploited to defraud individuals or propagate false information.
There is a simple solution to this problem. You should check WhatsApp’s Settings and select Chat Settings. Then locate the Save to Gallery option and toggle it to Off. This will safeguard you from this risk. However, a genuine solution to the problem will require app developers to change how apps handle media files in the future.
Using WhatsApp Web
WhatsApp Web is a useful tool for everyone who spends most of their time in front of a computer. It gives WhatsApp users the convenience of not picking up their phones every time they want to send a message. In addition, the large screen and keyboard provide a superior overall user experience.
However, there is a catch. The online version may be exploited to sneak into your WhatsApp conversations as conveniently as it is. You risk being tracked when you use WhatsApp Web on someone else’s computer.
So, if the computer’s owner checked the box to keep me signed in at login, your WhatsApp account will remain signed in even if you exit the browser. The owner of the machine can then easily access your information.
If you want to avoid this, make sure you log out of WhatsApp Web before leaving. However, as the saying goes, prevention is preferable to cure. The best strategy is to avoid using anything other than your computer to access WhatsApp on the web.
Using WhatsApp Clone on other Devices
Using clones of phony websites to install malware is an ancient hacking tactic used by numerous hackers worldwide. Malicious websites are what these clone sites are called. The hacking technique is now being used to break into Android systems. An attacker will try to get into your WhatsApp account by installing a clone of WhatsApp that looks quite identical to the genuine app.
Take, for example, the WhatsApp Pink phishing scam. It promises to convert the regular green WhatsApp backdrop to pink. It is a clone of the original WhatsApp. This is how it goes.
Unknowingly users are sent a link to download the WhatsApp Pink app, which allows them to change the background colour of their app. And, even though it does change the background colour of your app to pink, as soon as you install it, it will begin collecting data not only from WhatsApp but from everything else on your phone.
However, there are tools and apps to protect your WhatsApp from hackers. If you want to enhance your WhatsApp privacy and protect communication, you can use GB WhatsApp on your phones. Hope this article helps you know the risks with your WhatsApp account.