A new WhatsApp scam is doing the rounds in which an account pretending to be WhatsApp’s official team is sending messages to users, asking them to share their verification code. Although it doesn’t look real enough, some users might fall for the trap and end up sharing their details unknowingly with the scammers.
A twitter user shared the screenshot of the chat on Twitter and asked WAbetainfo to verify it. The WhatsApp features tracker has said that the message is absolutely fake as WhatsApp never sends messages to its users. “This is #FAKE. WhatsApp doesn’t message you on WhatsApp, and if they do (for global announcements, but it’s soooo rare), a green verified indicator is visible,” Wabetainfo tweeted.
The message in Spanish reads, “We have sent you a request for identity verification to verify.” The six-digit verification is used to activate a WhatsApp account on a new device. The fake account has WhatsApp icon as its display picture which can easily trick users into believing that the message has been sent by WhatsApp only.
Wabetainfo also shared an example of an authentic WhatsApp message. The screenshots show a green verified tick right beside the account name. You will also notice the absence of a chat bar, which clearly means that you cannot reply to an official message by WhatsApp. The messaging app only sends its users messages whenever there is an official announcement to make and that platform is just used for that. It doesn’t happen very frequently so chances are that some of you might have never noticed a message by WhatsApp’s official team.
However, it is important for users to know that WhatsApp never asks its users for personal details not even including authentication codes. The message in the screenshot was just an attempt by the scammer to gain access to the user’s WhatsApp account.
In fact, in its FAQ section, WhatsApp has asked users to not share their SMS verification code with other users. The Facebook-owned messaging app has also explained what it means when someone asks for your WhatsApp verification code. “If someone is trying to take over your account, they need the SMS verification code sent to your phone number to do so. Without this code, any user attempting to verify your number can’t complete the verification process and use your phone number on WhatsApp,” the company wrote.