WhatsApp Gif Vulnerability Compromised User Data

In spite of the fact that Facebook has been offering numerous updates to WhatsApp in order to make the instant messaging platform a little more secure, a bug has been revealed that could potentially end up compromising user data. This is the latest in a long line of bugs all of which have caused problems for the instant messaging platform, and it seems like the current vulnerability comes from the sharing of Gifs due to a security flaw that occurs whenever a Gif is shared between two devices.

A researcher who uses the moniker “Awakened” has revealed that there is a vulnerability that is associated with the previews you get for Gifs before you send them. When you open up the gallery in order to choose a Gif, a double free vulnerability occurs which essentially involves the creation of an opening that a malicious actor can use in order to either crash your device or gain access to it which would potentially result in these malicious actors being able to read and download your text messages, something that most people would definitely consider a serious breach of their privacy.

The issue has mostly been seen in devices that are using the latest version of Android, with those that are using older version of Android oddly enough not being vulnerable to this threat. The good news is that Facebook has been notified of this vulnerability and they have patched it in the new update that is available for WhatsApp, so as long as your WhatsApp is fully updated there is no reason to believe that your account might end up becoming compromised. This does, however, indicate a worrisome trend whereby WhatsApp ends up getting compromised due to some kind of security flaw, something that definitely will have a negative impact in the impression that people are going to have while they are using it.



Photo: SOPA Images via Getty Images

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