A new scam on WhatsApp that claims to offer free dental treatment has already affected more than 162,000 users since May, according to dfndr lab, PSafe's digital security lab. The rumor is circulated by the messenger mentioning the "Smiling Brazil 2019", which supposedly provides, free of charge, appliances, implants, restoration and other related items. The name "Smiling Brazil" is, in fact, a government program, but it has nothing to do with the text shared on WhatsApp. According to the security company, about 2,500 people are affected daily by the coup.
WhatsApp and Telegram can allow hackers to manipulate photos and videos.
WhatsApp used to spread new Internet scam Photo: Anna Kellen Bull / dnetc
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When the user clicks on the link that accompanies the message, he or she is redirected to a page that asks for personal data, such as full name, email and phone, and is induced to grant permission to receive future notifications, which may present new scams. The disseminated text also asks the victim to share the message with five WhatsApp contacts. Finally, the affected person is directed to pages with fraudulent advertisements.
According to dfndr lab director Emilio Simoni, scams that take advantage of real government programs are common, and do many casualties. "In this particular attack, the hacker directs the user to pages with suspicious advertisements, and with each new view, the cybercriminal makes more money. The hacker's high profitability explains why he has been active since May." , completed the expert.
Not to fall for scams like this, according to Emilio, it is important to always check the official shared link, as well as use security solutions that provide automatic phishing detection function in messaging applications and social networks. It is also important to be wary of very advantageous or under-priced promises common to scams.