According to CheckPoint, potential hackers could act on conversations in three different ways: by modifying a person’s posts, posting a message in a group posing as one of the participants, or sending a specific message to a participant. group member as a group message.
The cybersecurity company is worried about the risks of mass manipulation that would make this flaw, reminiscent of rumors spread in recent years via messaging, Brazil or India in particular, causing the death of people.
In a statement, WhatsApp said it had “carefully considered this problem, which is similar to trying to edit an email after it is sent. There is no problem with the encryption security of the application, which ensures that only the sender and recipient can read their exchange.
As for CheckPoint, it highlights the consequences that such a fault may have during the election period in particular, while “WhatsApp plays an increasingly central role, especially in developing countries.”
“On large groups, where bursts of messages are sent, there is little chance that a member takes the time to check otherwise information that would be disseminated, and could easily be abused,” says the business.
On this point, WhatsApp claims to take “the challenge of misinformation very seriously and (have) recently incorporated a limit in the message strings and changed the” chat “groups. We also ban users who try to modify the app to get around these limits.”
Founded in 2009 and bought by Facebook in 2014, WhatsApp claimed at the beginning of the year more than 1.5 billion users and 65 billion messages exchanged daily.