PSA: Whatsapp messages and contacts stored with mobile number

Whatsapp is a very popular messaging service but for all its popularity it's probably one of the least secure apps on our smartphones. Whatsapp has been plagued for a very long time with privacy and security concerns and now you can add one more to that list.

The app works by tying all your info on the phone such as messages and contacts with your mobile phone number. As such, if you change your SIM from one device to another you still have access to your info. But this doesn't work quite as well as most folks would like. Or rather, it works too well. Such is the case, as described by one of our forum users, below:

If you change your number and someone else takes it after a few months, all your contacts/messages are accessible by the next person who installs WhatsApp on the same phone number unless the account was deleted manually. I got a new phone number and can access the previous owner's contacts/messages (using my smartphone!) This is ridiculous!

Ridiculous is indeed the proper term. It's quite mind boggling that a service which apparently has more users than Twitter, whatever that means, is so lax on security that every few weeks a new major issue pops up. Of course, the issue above isn't really new. It has been reported before and some of you may have even encountered it in real life. But maybe, just maybe, the company will finally start taking users' concerns seriously.

So remember folks, the next time you change your phone number you should probably delete all sensitive info manually instead of trusting companies.

Thanks to our users for pointing this out! | Image via Wikimedia

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