WhatsApp Account Of Top Odisha IT Official ‘Hacked’ After Unknown Call; Fraudsters Loot Contacts Of Rs 7 Lakh

Bhubaneswar: The WhatsApp account of Odisha Computer Application Centre (OCAC) CEO Manoj Pattnaik has reportedly been hacked and his acquaintances defrauded Rs 7 lakh.

Pattnaik is also serving as Additional Secretary of the State Electronics And Information Technology (E&IT) Department.

Posing as the OCAC CEO, the hackers allegedly demanded money from his contacts, who transferred around Rs 7 lakh to accounts shared by them. A complaint in this regard has been lodged at Saheed Nagar police station here.

Pattnaik told the media that he had received a call from an unknown number on his WhatsApp on Tuesday afternoon. When the caller did not say anything, he hung up the phone after around 30 seconds. After some time, he received a call from one of his friends, who inquired about his health and the distress message which he had received from his Whatsapp number seeking urgent financial help for treatment.

“It was then that I realised someone had hacked my WhatsApp account. But I did not click on any unknown link,” Pattnaik added.

Five contacts, including Pattnaik’s colleagues, claimed to have transferred money to the bank and UPI accounts shared by the fraudster in the distress message.

WhatsApp is the most popular messaging application in the world with billions of users on its platform. All that a hijack requires is a user error to hack the account.

Never send anyone a six-digit verification code which is an OTP to log into the app. A malicious GIF can also compromise the user’s entire chat history. They can also access a device simply by placing a WhatsApp voice call. This attack instals an older and well-known piece of spyware called Pegasus., which allows hackers to collect data on phone calls, messages, photos, and video. It even let them activate devices’ cameras and microphones to take recordings.

An attacker can also hack your account by installing a clone of WhatsApp, which might look strikingly similar to the original app. In the WhatsApp Pink scam, a clone of the original WhatsApp reportedly changes the standard green WhatsApp background to pink.


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