Govt Advises Officials to Avoid WhatsApp After Israeli Company’s Hack

After the NSO Group’s (an Israeli cybersecurity firm) alleged attack on WhatsApp, Pakistan’s Ministry of Information Technology has barred higher Pakistani officials from sharing any government documents over the Facebook-owned platform.

The debate about WhatsApp’s security being compromised started back in May this year. WhatsApp has a buffer overflow weakness that allowed the NSO Group to plant spyware in more than 1400 devices, out of which some were allegedly from Pakistan.

On 29th October, Facebook filed a lawsuit against the NSO group claiming that the cybersecurity firm sold a hacking platform in several countries (Pakistan included). The platform exploited WhatsApp’s buffer overflow flaw and helped clients hack into cellphones between a timeframe ranging from April 29, 2019, and May 10, 2019.

As a result, Pakistan’s Ministry of Information Technology issued a letter dated 8th November 2019, asking higher officials to not use WhatsApp for official communications.

The ministry has asked the officials to:

  • Not share classified or official information over the platform.
  • Upgrade their WhatsApp to the latest version which fixes the buffer overflow issue.
  • Replace their smartphones in case they were bought before 10th May 2019.

Just a week ago, a similar advisory was issued by the Indian army which mentions that there have been instances where information was lost through social media, which shows the negligence of army personnel.

  • Use Wickr me and tutanota

    Ban WhatsApp, Facebook, tiktok, YouTube

    Unban telegram

    Don’t ban Twitter, PUBG (i use them)

      • No dear. It’s still blocked. It’s working partially.

        Login screen, telegram website, web links, calling, telegram notification services don’t work due to blocking.

  • Use Brave internet browser or Firefox browser

    Uninstall Chrome from computer and phones. Stay away from Chinese browsers.

        • In my opinion Wickr Me is better than all. Signal cannot be used without mobile number and Telegram is half WhatsApp half secure.

          For most secure chatting Wickr me

          For daily life secure chatting and unlimited features, Telegram. (Telegram voice quality was crystal clear even on 2G network before blocking by Pak)

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