Do not answer: WhatsApp advises users to block and report calls from unknown international numbers – Times of India

NEW DELHI: WhatsApp has asked users to block and report suspicious calls and messages from unknown international or domestic phone numbers, the advisory coming at a time when numerous subscribers of the popular messaging app have been getting unsolicited calls from various countries.
“Blocking and reporting suspicious messages/ calls is an important step to effectively combat scams and when users receive calls from unknown international or domestic phone numbers, WhatsApp provides a convenient way to block and report suspicious accounts,” the company said in a statement.
It said that users should report the accounts to WhatsApp so that the company can take the required action against them and ban them from the platform. “Users can also control who sees their personal details and their online presence by using our privacy controls. Keeping your personal details visible to only your contacts can help safeguard your account against bad actors.”
The company said that reporting the suspicious messages is an important step to effectively combat scams. “If the message is from an unknown person asking for unusual information or with an odd request, contact the organisation or person directly for clarification and, in the meantime, avoid sending any money or sharing any personal information. Unlike traditional SMS or other platforms, WhatsApp gives you the option to block and report the sender right away to break the cycle of scams. Users may also receive calls from unknown international or domestic phone numbers, do not answer these calls and block and report such accounts.”
The company said that it is raising awareness about its product features and tools through a safety campaign that can help users stay protected from online scams and frauds. “While scammers can be convincing and persistent, it is important for consumers to remain vigilant.”
It said that users should not share their personal information with anyone. “We transact within the online world daily and thus protecting our personal information and privacy is essential when using the internet. Avoid sharing sensitive information such as your address, phone number, passwords, credit/ debit card numbers, and bank account information.”
Also, it advised that users should think before they act to stay protected. “Scammers often create a false sense of urgency, tricking unsuspecting individuals into giving up sensitive information. They also use impersonation (pretending to a person or organisation you would trust) and often send fake phishing links. When you receive a text or request that looks suspicious, don’t act right away. Stop and take five before you respond, think if this an unusual request, and avoid clicking suspicious, unverified links,” the company said.

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