WhatsApp is one of the most used instant messaging applications, without a doubt, one of the first apps that we download and install when we buy a new mobile. Over time, WhatsApp has been improving the privacy and security of conversations, such as with the introduction of end-to-end encryption, however, this does not mean that it is completely infallible and there are still no vulnerabilities that can expose our conversations or shared files. through the app. For this reason, in this article we will see how to know if someone is spying on you on WhatsApp and how you can avoid it.
Can someone spy on WhatsApp conversations?
We all know the risks that are there for privacy on the Internet , whether we browse from a computer or from a mobile, if we enter a website or social network or use an application. Therefore, it is not uncommon for this question to arise, is it possible that another person is spying on my WhatsApp?
The answer is yes. Despite all the security improvements that the app, now owned by Facebook, has been incorporating, today it is still possible for someone to spy on my conversations in it. But how is this possible?
How can someone spy on WhatsApp?
The truth is that there are different ways to spy on conversations on WhatsApp, some easier to carry out than others, although they all imply a certain degree of carelessness on our part and leave our mobile unattended or our account open on the computer.
Using WhatsApp Web
If there is a relatively easy way to spy on my WhatsApp, it is by using WhatsApp Web. The desktop application itself entails a significant security breach, because all you have to do is share your computer with someone else and have it installed, so that other person, if they want, can open the desktop app and see your conversations without you know it
“Okay” you will say, “but my computer is only used by me, so no one will be able to use the app on it except me”. Error, in reality it is possible that another person can activate WhatsApp Web using your mobile, just carelessness is enough and you leave the mobile unattended for a few minutes (let’s think of people we live with at home or at work, where it is more likely that let’s leave the mobile unattended for a while).
In this case, the person who wants to spy on my WhatsApp just has to take my mobile, enter the app and scan the QR code to activate WhatsApp Web and they will be able to see all our conversations from their own computer and without us being aware of it. it.
Much more complex, but not impossible, is to spy on WhatsApp (and basically any corner of the mobile) using spy software.
This software can enter the smartphone in different ways, although the most common is through a fraudulent app that we have been able to download, believing it to be legitimate, being victims of a smishing attack . The app will install the spy malware, which will have access to all our conversations, shared files, call logs and practically any data or information that we store on the mobile.
This malware will run in the background, hidden from view.
Duplicating the WhatsApp account
Although this way is more complicated to carry out, because it requires someone to get hold of our SIM card and insert it into another mobile to activate WhatsApp on that terminal and restore the backup copy of the app to recover the chats, there is no to discard it completely (there are people capable of going very far when they have an interest in it).
If this person manages to configure WhatsApp on their terminal and restore the backup copies, they will have access to our conversations and contacts, and can even impersonate us.
“Fortunately”, later we will see how to know if WhatsApp is being spied on from another mobile is quite simple.
Now that we know the main ways in which our conversations can be spied on, how do you know if your WhatsApp is being spied on ?
How do you know if your WhatsApp is being tracked?
Although we have said that when someone spies on our WhatsApp we will surely not be aware of it, the truth is that there are some ways to know if someone is spying on me on WhatsApp, how? , you just have to look for “the signs”.
If they do it with spyware
If a spyware or malware has slipped into our mobile, even if it runs in the background and is hidden, it is very possible that we will notice some of these things in the terminal, which indicate that something is not right:
- The battery drains faster than usual. This is a sign that there is an app running in the background, so you should check the ones that are active and eliminate the one that is suspicious or that you do not remember having downloaded and installed.
- If notifications sound, but you have not received any, it may be a sign that your WhatsApp or mobile in general is being spied on.
- If the terminal gets too hot, even when you have the screen off, which can indicate, again, an app running in the background.
If they do it from another mobile
How to know if WhatsApp is being spied on from an iPhone or Android mobile? As we already anticipated, it is very easy, if someone duplicates our WhatsApp account on another device, we will no longer be able to use it on ours and when we try to open it, we will get a message indicating that “this phone could not be verified because that number has been registered on another device.
In this case, you must give the option to verify in order to recover the account as soon as possible.
If they do it from the computer
What if they spy on me from a computer? How do I know if my ex is spying on me on WhatsApp , or a friend, for example? It may be unlikely, but we have already seen that it only takes an oversight and leaving the mobile unattended for a few minutes, so that another person scans the QR code and installs WhatsApp Web on his computer using our account.
In this case, we only have to do a small check in the WhatsApp settings to see if there is another session active on a computer. Although you will also be able to notice if messages suddenly appear with the blue double check and you do not remember having read them, since when they are read on the computer, they also appear with the double check on the phone.
Now, to see if there is another active session, just follow these steps:
- Open WhatsApp.
- Click on the three dots.
- Click on “WhatsApp Web” in the drop-down menu.
- On the next screen you will be able to see where you are logged in and when or if you are logged in.
- If there is one that you do not recognize or seems suspicious to you, click on it and click on “Close session” to leave your WhatsApp Web account without access, since to reopen it, it will be necessary to scan the QR code with the phone.
And if you use a shared computer and have WhatsApp Web installed, close the session whenever you stop using it, even if it is a hassle to have to scan the QR code every time you want to use the desktop app, but this will ensure that no one else can have access to your conversations.
Spying on WhatsApp conversations is a crime
Before moving on to the last point of this article, we must point out that spying on WhatsApp conversations is a crime, specifically it is the crime of discovery and disclosure of secrets, which is typified in article 197 of the Penal Code and includes prison sentences of between 1 to 4 years and a fine of 1 to 2 years. These sentences, in addition, can be toughened, if the person who carries out the crime is the spouse or person with whom the victim has maintained an affective relationship, even if there has been no cohabitation.
So if someone has spied on your WhatsApp conversations and you have proof of it, you can report it to the police. Especially if that person has made those conversations public.
How can you stop WhatsApp from being tracked?
Although we already know how to detect if we are being spied on on WhatsApp, it is best to use the possible means to prevent it from happening to us. Here are some tips that will be very useful to prevent this situation:
- Never leave your mobile unattended, especially in public places, such as work.
- Lock the mobile by fingerprint, easy or iris scan. If you can avoid it, do not set the pattern as a secondary unlock and choose a complex PIN or password as this second method. This will make it a little more difficult for a third person to access your mobile and your WhatsApp.
- Do not share your password or PIN with anyone.
- If you suspect that you have some kind of malware on your phone, format it to remove it. It is better to be cautious.
- Review the list of apps you have installed and if any of them seem suspicious or you don’t remember having downloaded them, delete them and, to be safer, format the phone, because sometimes the malware is not completely removed from the phone, despite uninstalling the app.
- Sign out of WhatsApp Web when you’re not using it, especially on shared computers (as we’ve already pointed out).
- If you receive an SMS from the bank, an online service, a courier company, etc., in which they urge you to carry out an action, such as clicking on a link to unlock an account or a card or make a new appointment to deliver a package, do not click on the link, you are facing a smishing attempt, which will end up downloading malware on your mobile. This malware will be able to spy on your mobile and steal your accounts.
In short, being careful with the mobile, the apps that we download and the sessions that we leave open is the best way to prevent them from spying on our WhatsApp.
The above content published at Collaborative Research Group is for informational purposes only and has been developed by referring to reliable sources and recommendations from experts. We do not have any contact with official entities nor do we intend to replace the information that they emit.