Smartphones have become the nerve center of our digital life and that is why Protecting ourselves against potential threats is something that should concern us. Especially when we put all our trust in applications that we download and install thinking that they are completely safe and will not create more problems for us.
But unfortunately, this is not the case, and any code, technology or device can suffer security flaws through which cybercriminals sneak in and that are not even known by their developers. And something like this has happened in the last few months when Project Zero researchers have disclosed a vulnerability found in three of the most popular voice and video calling and messaging apps: Messenger, Google Duo and Signal.
Problem found, problem fixed
The fact is that the members of this security team linked to Google they found this problem after discovering another one that had to do with iPhones (in 2019) and that it allowed an attacker to take control of the phone’s camera and microphone to see us even before picking up a voice or video call. So thinking that these types of problems could be reproduced on other types of platforms, they decided to search.
And they found it. Both Messenger (from Facebook), Signal and Google Duo were potentially insecure when it comes to preventing an attacker from taking control of both our camera and the microphone of the smartphone to record us without any limitation. And in some cases, that intrusion could go further and allow the hacker to interfere with its performance and handling.
In all cases Project Zero members reported the finding to affected apps last year, to take action and correct those vulnerabilities so if you have any of those apps installed and updated right now, you are not in any danger. In the case of Messenger, the update arrived in November last year, while Google Duo did it a little later, in December.
Only Signal seems to have been the one who hurried to avoid bigger problems and, Already in September 2020 the security flaw was controlled and the bug corrected, So if you are one of those who have fled from WhatsApp in recent days because of the new conditions of use that we will have to accept, you will not run any problem.