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