Whatsapp Hoax: It Is A Hoax. Really, It Is WhatsApp Blog

It is a hoax. Really, it is.We have been getting a lot of emails and questions from you about this chain letter message circulating in our network:

WhatsApp is going to cost us money soon. The only way that it will stay free is if you are a frequent user i.e. you have at least 10 people you are chatting with. To become a frequent user send this message to 10 people who receive it (2 ticks) and your WhatsApp logo should turn Red to indicate a frequent user.Please understand that this is a hoax and there is no truth to it. While we are flattered that we made it to Hoax Slayer, we would rather work on cool new features instead of debunking silly stories like these.

Whatsapp Hoax UPDATE: this is a hoax message as well:

“Whatsapp is shutting down on 28th jan Message from Jim Balsamic (CEO of Whatsapp) we have had an over usage of user names on whatsapp Messenger. We are requesting all users to forward this message to their entire contact list. If you do not forward this message, we will take it as your account is invalid and it will be deleted within the next 48 hours. Please DO NOT ignore this message or whatsapp will no longer recognise your activation. If you wish to re-activate your account after it has been deleted, a charge of 25.00 will be added to your monthly bill. We are also aware of the issue involving the pictures updates not showing. We are working diligently at fixing this problem and it will be up and running as soon as possible. Thank you for your cooperation from the Whatsapp team”

Whatsapp Hoax: It Is A Hoax. Really, It Is WhatsApp Blog

Whatsapp Hoax Detailed Analysis
According to a warning message that is currently circulating via social media and instant messaging, smartphone cross platform messaging application WhatsApp is set to start charging its users for sending messages. The message claims that users can avoid this impending charge by sending the warning to ten other people to prove that they are a “frequent users”. Supposedly, the WhatsApp logo will turn red after the ten people have received the message thereby indicating that the service will remain free for that user.

However, the message is just a silly hoax. WhatsApp has not announced any plans to start charging its users for sending messages. And, even if it did, the company would certainly not announce its plans to start charging via a vague and poorly worded instant message or Facebook post. Nor would WhatsApp impose the absurd requirement that people had to prove they are frequent users by sending on a message to ten people.

Whatsapp Hoax It Is A Hoax

The WhatsApp webpage notes:

Because WhatsApp Messenger uses the same internet data plan that you use for email and web browsing, there is no cost to message and stay in touch with your friends. And WhatsApp has now issued a statement via its website blog confirming that the message is a hoax.

WhatsApp Messenger is a proprietary, cross-platform instant messaging application for smartphones. In addition to basic messaging WhatsApp Messenger users can send each other images, video and audio media messages.

WhatsApp Messenger is available for iOS, BlackBerry OS, Android, Symbian and Windows Phone only. WhatsApp synchronizes with the phone’s contact’s book, so users do not need to add contacts in a separate book.As the underlying technology the application uses the open standard XMPP.

WhatsApp  Security concerns

In May 2011 there was a security hole reported in WhatsApp which left user accounts open for hijacking.Communications made by this previous version of WhatsApp were not themselves encrypted, and data was sent and received in plaintext, meaning messages could be easily read if packets could be sniffed.In September 2011 a new version of the WhatsApp Messenger application for iPhones was released. In this new version, the developer has closed a number of critical security holes that allowed forged messages to be sent and messages from any WhatsApp user to be read.

On January 6th 2012 an unknown hacker published a website (WhatsAppStatus.net) which made it possible to change the status of an arbitrary whatsapp user, as long as the phonenumber was known. To let it work it only required a restart of the app. According to the hacker it is only one of the many security issues in Whatsapp. On the 9th of January Whatsapp reported to have implemented a final solution. In reality the only measure that was taken, was blocking the website’s IP-address. As a reaction a windows tool was made available for download providing the same functionality. This issue has not been resolved until now. The first notification of this issue has been reported to Whatsapp in September 2011

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