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RSS FeedsHere`s what you need to know about the WhatsApp hack - and how to protect yourself
(The Star Canada)


14 may 2019 23:56:47

Here`s what you need to know about the WhatsApp hack - and how to protect yourself
(The Star Canada)

OTTAWA–Roughly 1.5 billion people who thought their private messages were secure woke up to troubling headlines Tuesday.WhatsApp, a popular encrypted messaging service owned by Facebook, acknowledged it had been targeted by an “advanced cyber actor.” A security flaw allowed that actor to install spyware on targets’ mobile phones, giving it access to location data, private messages and other information.Here’s a breakdown of what you need to know about the WhatsApp hack and practical steps to protect your own personal information. What is WhatsApp?WhatsApp is a messaging and calling application that uses end-to-end encryption, which basically just means a more secure way to communicate with the person you’re trying to reach. When end-to-end encryption works, only the intended recipient of a phone call or message can access that message.The company was bought by Facebook for $19 billion in 2014, and is popular in India, Germany, the U.K., and many countries in Africa and South America. The New York Times reported in January that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg intends to integrate WhatsApp messaging with Facebook Messenger and Instagram, creating a network of 2.6 billion users worldwide.That’s a lot of people to hack.Sure is. The Financial Times first reported Monday night that WhatsApp had discovered a security flaw that allowed an “advanced cyber actor” to compromise users’ mobile phones. The hacker or hackers would simply have to call a WhatsApp user to install the spyware — the target wouldn’t even have to pick up — and gain access to sensitive information like location data, private messages and emails.The Financial Times reported that the spyware was developed by the NSO Group, a private Israeli company that sells spyware products to governments and law enforcement agencies.What else is known about the NSO Group?The NSO Group is a secretive company reportedly founded by ex-Israeli sig ...

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