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Users of WhatsApp Being Attacked by New Malware

Illegal access, breach of confidentiality and theft of data which cause irritation to consumer users, might threaten users of smartphones also in forthcoming years.

Facebook owns WhatsApp which is multi-platform messaging service offering calling, chat sharing photos and videos among users. 700 million people use this service and it is estimated that 30 billion messages are being sent each day on this platform making it an expansive target.

Cyber-criminals are forwarding bogus emails posing as genuine WhatsApp content but when the recipient clicks on the message, it spread malware.

The emails consists of different subject lines such as "An audio memo was missed" and "You have obtained a voice notification", each followed by a short thread of random characters that might be used to recognize the recipient.

The attachment consists a compressed (.zip) file containing a malware possibility. The malware is different from the Nivdort family that normally imitates itself into various system folders, adding itself into an auto-run in the registry of the computer.

If the zip file enclosed in the email is opened and executed, the malware will be installed on the PC. When it is run, it imitates itself into different system folders as well as adding itself into an auto-run in the registry of the computer.

Data is stolen and sold to advertisers for telemarketing. Online shoppers will find advertisements of e-commerce company on their Facebook page. Thehindu.com posted on 8th January, 2016, stating that the intrusion of a malware into smartphones can make the device to run slowly and permit unsolicited advertisements to show up.

The messages look genuine as criminals are using display name spoofing. When an email comes, it shows that it was coming from an umbrella branding name, WhatsApp, but in reality, it does not come from the company.

Cybercriminals are seemingly to a great extent like marketers - trying to use innovative subject lines to create unsuspecting emails and get them clicked and unsealed to spread malware. Comodo is working thoroughly to create innovative technology solutions to stay ahead of the cybercriminals, protect and secure endpoints and keep organisations and IT settings secure and safe.

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