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Rajiv Singha

Beware of the WhatsApp spam message that begins with ‘Have you seen this?’

October 23, 2017
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Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

A few days back I received a message from one of my contacts on WhatsApp. The message read,
“OMG!! Have you seen this? link”

whatsapp_spam_message

As you may have noticed, the message does not say much but has a link bearing the name of a popular online store. I didn’t click on it because I knew it was a WhatsApp spam message. But, I’d like to help you understand what would most probably happen if you click on the link.

• First, you are taken to a website that ‘looks’ like a popular online store

• Then, you are prompted to play a game like ‘Spin a Wheel’ where you can claim a prize depending on where the wheel’s pointer stops

• After you spin the wheel, let’s say you win a smartphone. Now, to claim the prize, you are instructed to share your happiness about winning the prize with 5 or more of your friends

• Once you do this, you are asked to install an app as the last step before you can claim your prize

• You install the app but nothing happens – you never receive your gift

So, what happened here?
The entire purpose of the message was to take you to a fake website and make you install unwanted apps and by doing so, the scammer was able to earn some money. And because you shared the message with your friends, who might do exactly what you did, you have helped the scam spread to more people – which means more money for the scammer. And no, no one receives any gift because there wasn’t any to begin with.

What’s worst?
Clicking on links in such messages might take you to a compromised web page that can silently drop a virus on your phone. And this virus can be used to steal your personal and confidential information (contacts, emails, messages, bank account details, etc.) or hijack your phone itself.

Other similar WhatsApp spam messages

  • Have you seen this? 321xa[dot]com
  • ? See this 158xa.com
  • ? See this now Amazon.2sales[dot]co
  • Spin The Lucky Wheel!
    ? Look Amazon.125xc[dot]com

What’s the lesson to be learned here?
With all the festivities around, it is common for us to receive messages about offers and discounts from big brands and online stores. While you should make the most of such offers, stay cautious of scams such as the one described above. If nothing, follow this one rule – never click on links in messages that sound exciting, promotional, strange or unusual. Whenever you receive a message of this nature, inquire about it with the sender and then take an appropriate action. As an added measure, secure your phone with a reliable mobile antivirus app.

If you have received such messages in the past or receive one in the future, do let us know about it; we’ll put it up on our blog. Stay safe!

 

References:
http://www.deccanchronicle.com/technology/mobiles-and-tabs/190916/beware-amazon-bigbillionday-lucky-wheel-hoax-spreads-on-whatsapp.html

https://check4spam.com/promotions/amazon-big-billion-day-offer-amazon-125xc-com-spam/

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Rajiv Singha
About Rajiv Singha
Rajiv is an IT security news junkie and a computer security blogger at Quick Heal. He is passionate about promoting cybersecurity awareness, content and digital...
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3 Comments

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  1. Today I received one such message on WhatsApp saying, “WOW !Mac Cosmetics is celebrating its 33rd anniversary and giving away FREE Shopping gift voucher worth of INR 5000 to everyone ! click here to get yours : Enjoy .”
    I was aware of this spam since I had read this article before. But when I alerted the sender of this message, who was already the prey of this spam, she asked me for the solution for checking if there is virus entered in her phone or not. If yes then how can she remove it? I have told her to install Quick Heal Antivirus and Mobile Security app.

    Reply
  2. Gurpreet singhFebruary 13, 2018 at 1:35 PM

    it’s an important info shared by you.I am thankful to you for this info.it would help me in my security

    Reply
  3. OMG!! *Have you seen this?* xxxu.xxuxe.com

    The name doesnt even make sense, still people get curious to open it. Received in some whatsapp group. While proving it as a scam I came across this article and thought to contribute.

    Reply