Stolen WhatsApp accounts: the real story


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In recent weeks a lot of users have reported about losing their WhatsApp accounts, stolen from “hackers”: no, they simply have given away their account. Let’s discover together the details.

Common questions Answers
Topic about? Stolen WhatsApp accounts
Is this article really needed? Unfortunately yes. People can be deceived and they might not know the importance of the 6-digit code.

STOLEN WHATSAPP ACCOUNTS

Some users, on Reddit and Twitter, have recently lost their WhatsApp account. How is that possible?
You know that, to sign into your WhatsApp account, you need an active SIM card, where you can receive SMS or calls, so WhatsApp can send a verification code, also called 6-digit code.
The 6-digit code is like a password, it’s secret and it must not be shared: in fact you don’t share the password of your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Mail account, because you know it’s something very private. But some people can cheat the victim, impersonating someone else.

FRIEND OR FAMILY MEMBER

Imagine this message from a friend or any family member: “Hey! I had to receive a SMS code from WhatsApp but my phone is unable to receive SMS right now, so I’ve indicated your phone number: can you tell me the code you received?”
Someone might think that it’s safe to share the code, because he’s someone he trusts: this is the biggest mistake we could make, because he will take over your account!
He in turn got his account stolen and you’re the new victim: it becomes a big chain. But how did he reach you, if chats are end-to-end encrypted? It’s really possible that you’re in the same group of the previous victim, and the thief chose you (and probably many other members too) from the group participants list.

FAKE ACCOUNT

Some people create fake accounts using virtual phone numbers, that aren’t authorized to use the WhatsApp service, and they create a false story to convince you to share your 6-digit code.
The message looks something similar:

  • “Your WhatsApp account will expire in 2 days. You need to renew it sending the code we sent via SMS.”
  • “The WhatsApp Team needs to know if you’re really a human: send the 6-digit code in this chat you just received via SMS.”
  • [WHATSAPP]: we have detected inusual activity in your account. Please confirm your identity with the verification code.”

People make up several stories to convince you that it’s safe to share the verification code. You need to know that nobody will ask for your 6-digit code on WhatsApp, neither WhatsApp: it is like a password, and passwords must not be shared.
In addition, WhatsApp will never ask for any private information.
If you receive any message from a WhatsApp chat without the green verification badge, it’s fake.

PROTECT YOUR ACCOUNT

  • Enable the Two-Step Authentication:
  • Always use official WhatsApp builds from the App Store, TestFlight, Play Store or the WhatsApp website. Unauthorized WhatsApp versions can compromise your privacy and security.
  • Again, never share your 6-digit code.

RECOVER YOUR ACCOUNT

You can simply sign into WhatsApp, verifying your phone number again by entering the famous 6-digit code, so the other person will be automatically logged out from your WhatsApp account.
It’s possible that the other person enabled the two-step verification. Unfortunately the only way to have full access to your WhatsApp account is to wait 7 days, so you can remove the old two-step verification but in the mean time WhatsApp has already disconnected the other person from your account.

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