WhatsApp OTP scam: What is it, how to stay safe

WhatsApp has millions of users around the world. Since the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown, the number of active users on the platform has grown by many folds as this is one of the easiest ways to connect with friends and family members while maintaining social distancing. Scammers and hackers have used this to their advantage to scam users and steal their personal data. The scam which is doing the rounds right now lets scammers hack into your WhatsApp account using an OTP.

This is an old trick that scammers have used to steal sensitive data. If you are targeted, scammers could at first send you a WhatsApp message from an unknown number claiming that they have sent a text message containing OTP by mistake and request you to forward it to them.

If this happens to you ensure to never share the OTP with anyone as this can provide access to your WhatsApp account. If you provide the OTP to the hacker, you could be locked out of your own WhatsApp account and the hacker could get full control of your chats and personal information.

How to stay safe from WhatsApp OTP scam

To keep away from such scams ensure to first enable Two-step authentication. Here’s how you can enable the option right away.

STEP 1: First click on the three dots on the top right corner after opening the WhatsApp app. Two-step authentication was introduced to the messaging platform a few years ago.

STEP 2: Then click on the Settings option followed by the Account option.

STEP 3: Then tap on Two-step verification and enable the option.

STEP 4: After enabling the option you will need to enter a six-digit pin that will be sent to you by WhatsApp.

STEP 5: WhatsApp will ask you to enter the pin twice, followed by your email address.

STEP 6: After confirming the email address your two-step verification will be activated.

STEP 7: If required you can disable or change the pin at any time by following the same step.

Once the Two-step authentication option is enabled, WhatsApp will ask you to enter the password at regular intervals for security purposes.

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