WhatsApp has issued a stern warning to its users about the fake versions of the app, urging them to avoid downloading them. The company’s CEO, Will Cathcart, said in a statement that users might end up in trouble if they download and use the modified version of the app.
According to Cathcart, the company’s security team detected some malicious apps that claim to be similar to the messaging app. These include the “Hey WhatsApp” and “HeyMods.” He urged users to avoid downloading these apps and warned about their potential safety.
He noted that the threat of mobile malware is a growing concern that needs to be countered. The security community is developing new tools and techniques to prevent it from spreading. He further warned that these fake apps can provide some of the same features as the official version, but they do not have the end-to-end encryption that users get with the original app.
He further said that the company’s team discovered that these apps’ promise to offer some new features to users is just a scam to steal personal information stored on people’s phones.
Although the fake version of WhatsApp is not available on the Play Store, users should still avoid downloading it from unofficial sources. To avoid getting infected, users should only use the official WhatsApp app from the play store.
In response to the growing threat of mobile malware, Google has released Google Play Protect which help prevent users from downloading fake versions of WhatsApp. The company’s CEO thanked the company for its continued efforts in fighting the issue. The CEO mentioned that WhatsApp is taking enforcement action against these ‘malicious apps’ and will further explore legal options to hold them accountable.
“We’ll of course continue our efforts to detect and block these kinds of apps going forward.” he said on Twitter.