The recent attack on Facebook-owned WhatsApp by Pegasus has raised serious questions about the privacy of WhatsApp messages including location details and multimedia files. While WhatsApp always boasts end-to-end encryption, the recent Pegasus attack has made users of WhatsApp appear as sitting ducks. Pegasus was able to successfully exploit a vulnerability in WhatsApp and was able to spy on users by simply placing’ missed calls’ on WhatsApp to its targets. A few rings from unknown numbers on WhatsApp calls were all required for attackers to install the Pegasus agent on victim’s phone to spy on them.
Currently, when it comes to snooping, perpetrators are required to have almost total access to the phone of the victim. Telegram developer Pavel Durov said that people should simply uninstall WhatsApp in this regard.
According to a Forbes article, Durov said on his telegram channel, “Unless you are cool with all of your photos and messages becoming public one day, you should delete WhatsApp from your phone.”
A strong view about Facebook and WhatsApp has recently been voiced by WhatsApp co-founder Brain Acton. He reaffirmed that Facebook should be logout and excluded from their lives by users. Acton has always been vocal about this and he continued to emphasize the need to leave Facebook while speaking at the recent 25th anniversary summit of Wired. He was quoted in The Verge’s report, “If you want to be on Facebook and you want to have ads thrust in front of you, go to town.”
He wasn’t talking about leaving Facebook for the first time. He tweeted back in March 2018, ‘ It’s time. #deletefacebook’. In March this year, Acton told students during his talk at Stanford University to delete their accounts from Facebook. Acton and another former Facebook employee, Ellora Israni, attended the ‘ Computer Science 181 ‘ undergraduate course. Israni is also She++’s founder.