WhatsApp is one of the world’s most popular instant messaging apps, and anyone who has a method to infect smartphones with malware through WhatsApp can easily target any smartphone currently in circulation right now.
This time we’re not talking about a random group of hackers as the method involves a very sophisticated spyware. Right now it’s not clear which country is behind the attacks.
Discovered a few weeks ago, the vulnerability allowed the attacker to install spyware by simply calling the target phone and it didn’t even matter if the phone call was answered or not.
The Spyware is called Pegasus, a product sold by Israeli group NSO Group to organizations and Governments interested in using hackers to infect the phones of people under surveillance.
It is unclear how long the vulnerability has been exploited or how many people got their devices compromised with the help of it. Still, the number of victims might not be very high as the software is only available for professional hackers.
Once informed about the existence of this vulnerability, WhatsApp needed only 10 days to release an update that fixed the problem.
Without mentioning the name of the NSO Group, WhatsApp administrator confirmed the suspicions that a private company is behind the vulnerability, a company known to provide spyware apps for Governments of the world.