Pavel Durov, the founder of instant messaging serviceTelegram, stated in his Telegram channel that WhatsApp has been used as a spyware for 13 years and that users should avoid the messaging app. He further claimed that WhatsApp has severe loopholes that endanger the data of its users every year.
“I’m not pushing people to switch to Telegram here. With 700M+ active users and 2M+ daily signups, Telegram doesn’t need additional promotion. You can use any messaging app you like, but do stay away from WhatsApp – it has now been a surveillance tool for 13 years,” Durov posted on his channel.
He said that a security flaw that WhatsApp exposed last week may provide hackers complete access to anything on a user’s phone. Sending malicious videos or starting a video call is all it takes for a hacker to gain access to all the data on a person’s mobile.
According to Durov, it’s not that updating WhatsApp to the latest version makes one’s data safe. He continued by pointing out that the same problem was also found continually from 2017-2020.
“Every year, we learn about some issue in WhatsApp that puts everything on their users’ devices at risk. This means it’s almost certain that a new security flaw already exists there. Such issues are hardly incidental – they are planted backdoors. If one backdoor is discovered and has to be removed, another one is added,” he added.
No matter how wealthy a person is, according to Telegram CEO, if they have WhatsApp installed on their phone, all of their data is available.
“That’s why I deleted WhatsApp from my devices years ago. Having it installed creates a door to get into your phone,” said Durov.
This comes following a security alert from WhatsApp in September. It released a patch for a flaw that might let a hacker infect a person’s device with a malware while they’re on a video conversation. The security hole has been given a ‘critical’ rating.