MEGA SECURITY BREACH HITS WHATSAPP
urged users on Tuesday to update its messaging application, following a report that a vulnerability allowed attackers to hack into and snoop on people’s phones using commercial Israeli spyware.
The chat app, owned by Facebook Inc, said it had discovered a vulnerability in early May that could enable attackers to insert and execute code on mobile devices. WhatsApp said it made changes to its infrastructure late last week to block the attacks from taking place, adding that only a select number of users appeared to have been targeted through the vulnerability by an advanced cyber actor, Bloomberg reported. “WhatsApp encourages people to upgrade to the latest version of our app, as well as keep their mobile operating system up to date, to protect against potential targeted exploits designed to compromise information stored on mobile devices,” a spokeswoman for the company said Tuesday.
The statement follows a report by the Financial Times that attackers were able to install surveillance software, developed by Israeli company NSO Group, on iPhones and Android devices by calling targets using the app’s phonecall function.
WhatsApp said the attack has the hallmarks of a private company that works with governments to deliver spyware, which takes over control of mobile phone operating systems.