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Telegram CEO Warns Users Of WhatsApp Security

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Telegram founder, Pavel Durov, revealed the weaknesses in the messaging app WhatsApp. He warned that WhatsApp is first and foremost a surveillance tool and that its users could run the risk of being hacked.

Pavel Durov lambasted WhatsApp in a social media post on Thursday. It came as a response to a developer’s report detailing two new flaws discovered in its programming.  The loopholes in the system allow people to plant malware. Clicking on a video call or playing a specially designed video file would open the channels to a user’s phone for hackers.

In a Telegram post, he said that WhatsApp itself revealed a security issue the previous week.

WhatsApp Security Concerns

Durov cited security issues with WhatsApp over the years. “A WhatsApp security issue exactly like this one was discovered in 2018, another in 2019, and yet another in 2020. And before that in 2017. Before 2016, WhatsApp was running without encryption.” Durov had criticized WhatsApp various times in the past.

According to Durov, the new revelations are part of a security risk pattern. He further added that “it’s almost certain that a new security flaw already exists there” because such vulnerabilities are “planted backdoors.”

In November 2019, Durov released a warning to WhatsApp users, asking them to remove the app from their mobile phones to protect their messages and photos from getting exposed. Last year, Durov also said that the new terms of WhatsApp ask users to infuse all their private data with Facebook.

He further claimed, “If one backdoor is discovered and has to be removed, another one is added.” He believes WhatsApp to be of “inherently dangerous nature”. He listed out additional vulnerabilities, like archives that are not properly encrypted and the government can get access to them via subpoenas.

According to Durov’s observations, WhatsApp was curated for surveillance purposes and to fulfill the needs of US government agencies like the FBI. But he also emphasized that the claims about user privacy being the priority are false and meant for the sake of advertising.

“With over 700 million active users and more than 2 million daily signups, Telegram doesn’t need additional promotion. You can use any messaging app you like, but do stay away from WhatsApp—it has now been a surveillance tool for 13 years,” he warned.

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