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Home Scams ‘Install WhatsApp Version 4.0’ Scam Message

‘Install WhatsApp Version 4.0’ Scam Message

by Brett M. Christensen

Image: © depositphotos.com/Mactrunk

Outline

‘Invite’ message being distributed via WhatsApp claims that you can follow a link to download and install ‘WhatsApp Version 4.0’.

Brief Analysis

The message is a scam and it is certainly not a genuine WhatsApp update notification. The message is designed to trick you into spamming your WhatsApp friends and divulging your personal information via suspect survey websites. It may also try to trick you into infecting your phone with malware. Do not click any links in this message.

Example

Wow, Finally most awaited Whatsapp version 4.0 has been released , Now With Whatsapp version 4.0 you can enjoy lots of new features like Video calling, Check who saw our whatsapp dp and status,Send more than 10 pics at once, sticker and theme support , free sms , Delete message in both sides, encrypted texts etc. You can install whatsapp version 4.0 only with invite. I am inviting you now. Download and install whatsapp 4.0 safely at [Link removed]WhatsApp Version 4 Scam Message

 

Detailed Analysis

This message, which travels via cross-platform messaging service WhatsApp, invites you to follow a link to install the ‘most awaited WhatsApp Version 4.0’. The message extolls the virtues of the supposed new version and claims that you can only install WhatsApp Version 4.0  by following the included link.

However, the message is certainly not an official WhatsApp new version notification and you will certainly not get ‘Version 4.0’ of WhatsApp by clicking the link. At the time of writing, there is no WhatsApp Version 4.0.
If you do follow the link, you will be taken to a fraudulent website that claims that you must send invites to a specified number of WhatsApp friends before you can download the new version. If you comply with this instruction, you will be promoting the scam on behalf of the crooks who created the fake message and exposing your WhatsApp friends to the scam as well.

And, even after inviting your friends, you will still not get to the mythical download page. Instead, you will be told that you must participate in one or more online surveys to verify your eligibility to receive the update. You will be presented with a list of survey site links to choose from. These survey sites will request your name, phone numbers, email address, and home address as a prerequisite for participating. But alas, fine print on the pages will state that, by participating, you are actually agreeing to share your information with site sponsors and online marketing companies. Thus,  soon after providing your details, you will begin receiving unwanted and annoying phone calls, text messages, letters, and emails selling various products and services.

The scammers who create these campaigns earn fees via affiliate marketing systems each time somebody fills in a survey.

During the procedure, various free apps may be offered to you.  However, these apps may contain malware that can infect your phone when you install them.

And, no matter how many surveys you complete or apps you download, you will never get hold of the promised new WhatsApp version.

WhatsApp scams like this one are very common.  Be wary of any message that claims that you can click to get new WhatsApp features, versions, or updates. Genuine messages or reports about version updates or new features will never require you to invite friends, participate in surveys, or install unrelated apps as a prerequisite for accessing the download.

Always get any updates for WhatsApp via the official app store for your device.  The WhatsApp website includes a download page that directs you to the correct download site for the device you are using.

Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,
Hoax-Slayer