WhatsApp knows what people you talk to and what your sleep habits are. And what’s worse, anyone can have access to this data. No, this is not a new feature of the instant messaging application to know the hours you sleep or the contacts with which you frequently exchange messages, images, videos or audios.
This information – which is not low and seriously jeopardizes the privacy of users – is obtained thanks to a failure of WhatsApp. It has been the engineer and cybersecurity expert Rob Heaton who has sounded the alarm after detecting this error in the web version of the app property of Mark Zuckerburg.
The app makes anyone can monitor your lifestyle without being aware and without the need to get your permission, making up a lot of data. Worst of all is that this WhatsApp bug for the moment has no solution, which implies that anyone interested can have access to your personal information.
This error in the popular messaging service comes from the “online” status, which appears every time we access the application. While WhatsApp allows you to hide your connection time or if you have read the messages – the famous double blue check -, it does not prevent us to know if that person is currently connected. Starting from this track, the connections are registered in a file of easy access.
Heaton wanted to prove it by doing an experiment on his website. It simulates the construction of a Chrome extension for the sole purpose of monitoring all the connections of your contacts, allowing you to know every time a contact is using WhatsApp.
And not only that. When you cross data from different users you can find out if two people have been chatting through the app and when they take place. This carries an additional problem: the danger of selling this information to third parties.
The lack of privacy, sharing data with other social networks along with WhatsApp security flaws are the main concerns of users. On more than one occasion, the European Union has asked to limit this practice, and to tighten the current legislation.