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Jordan Wildon
Your WhatsApp groups may not be as secure as you think they are. The "Invite to Group via Link" feature allows groups to be indexed by Google and they are generally available across the internet. With some wildcard search terms you can easily find some… interesting… groups.
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Jordan Wildon Feb 21
Replying to @crowdtangle
I actually discovered this when accidentally opening on a WhatsApp web tab, resulting in a list of groups that had been widely shared online. Point is, any group link that is shared it outside of secure, private messaging can relatively easily be found and joined.
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Jordan Wildon Feb 21
Replying to @JordanWildon
On top of that, even if you haven't shared the link, it's possible, but difficult, to run a kind of brute-force method to get access to a URL that corresponds to an active group chat.
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Jordan Wildon Feb 21
Replying to @hackrzvijay
It seems Facebook acknowledged this after alerted them, suggesting that admins can invalidate the link. In the app, I could only generate a new link (which invalidates the old one), but couldn’t disable it altogether.
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Jordan Wildon Feb 21
Replying to @JordanWildon
And it’s not just illegal porn, but in our searches earlier we discovered listings for far-right and anti-government groups. There’s a lot more to this under the surface.
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Jordan Wildon Feb 22
Replying to @JordanWildon
Also, I’ll save the devious of you out there some time by saying that the link in that screenshot won’t get you into my test chat, I’ve already reset it 😉
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kalpana chauhan Feb 22
Replying to @JordanWildon
Isn’t it how an open link should be? It’s a link and would be taken by google search engine the same way as any other link but google won’t have access to ph no. or group content.
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Jordan Wildon Feb 22
Replying to @kalpanachauhan
Yes, though this isn't exactly the thing that people are frustrated about. Around 450k groups were found and it's not clear that this would be possible. Phone numbers are easily accessible after joining the groups, and it's not too difficult to mine these open groups for data.
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Aurelio cuautle Feb 21
Replying to @JordanWildon
I informed whatsapp in 2016 about this indexed information problem.
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Jordan Wildon Feb 23
Replying to @stalio
Any chance you could drop me a DM, please? Thanks.
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