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How WhatsApp Status is being used to stalk people

How WhatsApp Status is being used to stalk people

Some companies have used the Common Internet Status Index for The WhatsApp To present inappropriate surveillance apps to people. When purchasing the service provided, it is possible to obtain a full report on the arrival of the person being tracked within the messaging platform.

The risk is that these services may facilitate an activity StalkersAccording to security firm Traced. Many of the programs in question present themselves as family trackers, that is, they sell themselves as a solution to help parents monitor their children.

How it works

WhatsApp works with the indication “online” of all accounts that use the messaging service, without any restrictions. Once you open or get a file a program In the foreground, the status has been activated. There is no way for people to change any setting so that it does not appear, unlikeLast seenWhich can be disabled.

In the “online” state, even contacts that are not saved in the user’s calendar can know when the person is using the platform.

What the companies that Traced chose not to quote have done is take advantage of this dynamic to create systems that collect and orchestrate this flow of data from the people they want to track. Starting with the purchase of the service and recording the number of interests of those to be monitored, the systems in question begin to record all the times a person entered and left WhatsApp.

The danger of this practice is that applications like this open up possibilities, for example, for companies to control employees and for spouses to spy on their spouses. The argument used is “to confirm or not to suspect”. The surveillance system can also be used by criminals.

Examples of how apps organize the data of the people seen

Image: Playback / Tracking

Betrayals and surveillance

According to the technology company, some surveillance systems have evolved and allow stalkers to add a second contact to cross data.

In cases where there are suspicions of cheating, for example, a person can check whether online schedules are identical, which will increase suspicions about an exchange of messages between the two tracked people.

Also according to Traced, many users of these services are publicly celebrating the success of their missions as “spies”. A person finds out about his partner’s betrayal.

Another explained on the Reddit forum how I used the solution to understand a partner’s psyche and know when to really focus on the conversation or wait for the contact to return.

Challenging combat surveillance

As mentioned earlier, many programs hide in app stores claiming that they are meant for parents to be more in control of what their kids do online. For this reason, they don’t go so far as to officially harm security policies.

The fact that nothing needs to be installed on the victims’ phone is also another difficulty, because victims do not even know that they are being monitored. This makes it difficult to prove the stalkers worked.

Chloe Mesdag, professor, activist in social sciences and digital security.

“They don’t even hide it. It’s even in marketing messages. It’s promoting violence,” he added.

WhatsApp even has settings for Increase people’s privacyTraced. However, he criticizes the fact that there is no tool in the messaging service that prevents this kind of monitoring, and also criticizes the fact that a certain device is being monitored.

The company argues that the feature should be changed to prevent people outside of the users’ contact list from accessing their status or from providing any better form of privacy control.

Traced said on her website that she had contacted WhatsApp to obtain information about the reasons for the “Internet” case being opened to the public, but received no response. tilt Also try positioning, but it wasn’t received until text was closed.

Increase WhatsApp privacy

Some of the ways to do this are:

  • Hide the profile picture or only allow access to the people you choose;
  • Disable those blue ticks that appear to show that you have received and read a message;
  • Show your status on WhatsApp to a few people only

No Android

  1. Open WhatsApp and go to the three dots in the upper right corner;
  2. Select the item “Settings”;
  3. Go to “Account” then “Privacy”;
  4. Several options will appear. Choose the one you want, change it and confirm it.

No iPhone

  1. Open WhatsApp and go to “Settings”;
  2. Select the item “Account”;
  3. Go to “Privacy”. Options such as “Last Seen”, “Profile Picture”, “Status” and others will appear here;
  4. Choose the one you want, change it and confirm it.

* Bruna Souza Cruz has teamed up

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