Some mysterious messages have reportedly been making rounds on WhatsApp and they can easily crash your app

Recently, WABetaInfo reported that a special kind of messages are circulating on WhatsApp that contain strange characters and cause the app to freeze or crash.

Even if you exit WhatsApp and log in again, the app might keep crashing. Eventually, you will have to delete the app, and then re-install it, but that will cause you to lose all your chat history that was not backed up.

WABetaInfo has termed these messages as ‘Scary messages,’ and they are comprise of strange characters that are completely unfathomable by anyone. Even they ‘confuse’ WhatsApp because the app is unable to interpret these messages correctly and has not been able to counterattack the threat so far too.

According to WABetaInfo, these characters make a combination that makes WhatsApp unable to process the message and determine the eventuality of the crashing of the app. These messages may come in the form of contact cards, VCards, and once you click and open the card, it may contain contacts having long and extremely confusing names based on weird characters. These are crash codes. These cards may contain payloads that may cause more problems for the users if they click on them.

These crash codes can be sent through other types of messages too, including followed links, messages in group chats, etc. According to WABetaInfo, many secret WhatsApp groups are working day in and out to create and share these crash codes to crash the app for many users. But this does not happen on WhatsApp alone. Other social media platforms can also become victims of such cybercriminal activities.

While there is always an impending threat, usually there are ways to get rid of those threats too. Through antivirus software and other security programs, it is possible to protect your device most of the time. However, on WhatsApp, when something like this happens, usually there is no way to counter-act.

In this case, also, there is nothing that you can do if you become a target of these ‘scary messages.’

All you can do is to quickly block that contact on WhatsApp Web. However, if your device is unable to reach the WhatsApp Web because your WhatsApp on mobile is already crashing, then there is no other way but to delete your WhatsApp and re-install it again. To prevent losing most of your chat history, it is advised to keep backing it up at least once a week.

Secondly, by setting your group privacy setting to ‘My Contacts,’ you can prevent unknown contacts to add you to groups that contain crash codes.

WABetaInfo has found this issue more prevalent in Brazil, but it can happen with anyone, anywhere.

Read next: Good News! Whatsapp Is Soon Likely to Bring an Ignore Notification Feature for Archived Chats
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