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By 6 November 2017 | Categories: news

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If you’ve recently downloaded a version of WhatsApp, you might want to check that it’s not a fake. According to The Hacker News, a fraudulent version of the app was found on Google Play, masquerading as the real deal. The fake is called Update WhatsApp Messenger and looks a lot like the original, even with the same developer title “WhatsApp Inc.” used (a special Unicode character was inserted to allow it to appear the same). Before Google eliminated the app, it was downloaded by more than one million users.

The app was spotted by users on Reddit, who pointed out that it did not allow instant messaging, but rather served users with ads to other apps. Redditor dextergenius noted that the app requires nothing more than internet access, but it then downloads a second APK that “tries to hide by not having a title and having a blank icon”.


Google has come under fire for malicious apps that are able to circumvent regulations put in place on the Google Play Store. Even with systems such as Google Play Protect to ensure device security, malware and fake apps remain a problem. Users are able to report inappropriate apps here.

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