The latest WhatsApp hoax message appears to have some truth to it.
The text, which asks people to pass it on to their friends, claims that a video is about to come out that could hack your phone.
It also warns against clicking on a message about WhatsApp Gold.
While the claim about the video is a scam, there is a genuine security risk about links to WhatsApp Gold, which can direct users to malicious websites.
The latest WhatsApp hoax message does have some truth to it. The message, which tells people to pass it on to their friends, claims that a video is about to come out that could hack your phone. It also warns against clicking on a message about WhatsApp Gold
If you receive such a message and wish to pass it on, delete the first part of the warning about the video.
‘If you know anyone using Whatsapp you might pass on this,’ one variation of the message reads.
‘An IT colleague has advised that a video comes out tomorrow from WhatsApp called martinelli do not open it.
‘It hacks your phone and nothing with fix it. Spread the word.’
However, WhatsApp users are not in any danger from the ‘Martinelli’ video because it does not exist.
The wording of the message has also been around for more than a year.
‘If you recieve a message to update the Whatsapp to Whatsapp Gold, do not click!!!!’, the text continues.
‘Now said on the news this virus is difficult and severe.’
User Fiona Colbron-Brown, a social entrepreneur from Glasgow who tweets under the handle @GlasgowEEC was one of the people who also shared the news on Twitter
HOW IS WHATSAPP PLANNING TO COMBAT HOAX MESSAGES?
Designed to help cut down on chain letter style messages, Whatsapp may use a new feature that will warn users if they receive a message or link that has been forwarded 25 times or more.
The warning will read ‘Forwarded Many Times’ at the top of the chat under the sender’s name.
The notice appears when users receive spam but also before they are potentially about to forward a dodgy message.
At the top of the forward screen, a message will appear that reads; ‘A message you are forwarding has been forwarded many times’.
However, it appears the company is not blocking messages forwarded multiple times.
The feature is currently still in testing mode and there is no guarantee it will be rolled out for all users.
The Whatsapp Gold part of the message is not a hoax.
This is a fake service and by clicking on the link within the message users could open the door to fraudsters stealing sensitive information.
The link contains malware which is harmful to the user’s phone and opens it up to criminals.
Several WhatsApp users have reported receiving the exclusive invite via their Messenger app.
The invite claims the elite service is used by celebrities and has extended features such as video calls, the ability to send multiple photos at the same time alongside a free calling feature.
If users are a victim of this scam they should also contact their mobile phone provider and ask for advice on cleaning their phone from any malware that has been downloaded.
They should also offer advice on how to safeguard the phone in the future.
User Fiona Colbron-Brown, a social entrepreneur from Glasgow who tweets under the handle @GlasgowEEC was one of the people who also shared the news on Twitter.
The warning, which originally circulated in Spanish, was confirmed as a hoax by Spain’s Policia Nacional.
Although the message claiming that a ‘Martinelli’ video will wipe your phone is in itself a scam it does warn of WhastApp Gold which is a genuine security risk