WhatsApp users lured in by malware

Criminals distributing malware are targeting WhatsApp users, security researchers have discovered.

The malware is being distributed in emails appearing to be from WhatsApp and these messages are being sent out in bulk, attempting to target as many users as possible, Comodo has revealed.

The most common emails sent to users are being disguised as notifications from the company that a user has missed a call or has received audio recording they haven't listened to. Users are alsp being sent other notifications too, including a video note, so WhatsApp users must be vigilant, the company said.

These emails do not come from a WhatsApp email address, even though they are clearly branded as so, making it easier to identify as fraudulent, Comodo added.

The malware itself appears as an email attachment and encourages the user to download it in order to listen to their message or view the missed calls/messages.

A variant of the Nivdort family of malware, the virus replicates itself into a number of the computer's system folders and installing as an auto-run file in the computer's registry.

"Cyber criminals are becoming more and more like marketers trying to use creative subject lines to have unsuspecting emails be clicked and opened to spread malware," said Fatih Orhan, director of technology for Comodo and the Comodo Antispam Labs.

"As a company, Comodo is working diligently in creating innovative technology solutions that stay a step ahead of the cyber criminals, protect and secure endpoints, and keep enterprises and IT environments safe."

Clare Hopping
Freelance writer

Clare is the founder of Blue Cactus Digital, a digital marketing company that helps ethical and sustainability-focused businesses grow their customer base.

Prior to becoming a marketer, Clare was a journalist, working at a range of mobile device-focused outlets including Know Your Mobile before moving into freelance life.

As a freelance writer, she drew on her expertise in mobility to write features and guides for ITPro, as well as regularly writing news stories on a wide range of topics.