Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates


Beware of these Whatsapp messages that will crash your app

There have been reports of WhatsApp messages that can crash the application. These messages are said to come in the form of vcards (the way we can send contacts on the platform) as well as just general messages. There was a similar issue a couple of years back when users reported on the “Black-Dot message“. This message was able to crash the app and even the user’s device.

These crash messages are similar to that. In a report by WABetaInfo, these messages contain characters that the application can’t process. When the contact (vcard) or message is opened they cause the application to freeze and then it will crash. Because WhatsApp cannot process this message this leads to an infinite crash. An infinite crash is when an application crashes every time you try to open it.

These messages are reportedly not only coming to individuals, but they are also coming in group chats as well. Users should be on the lookout for messages or contacts with unusual characters and symbols. These messages and contacts also tend to be very long.
An example of what these messages and contacts could appear as. If you encounter something like this don’t open the message. (via WABetaInfo)

What can you do to protect yourself?

At present, there is no solution to fix this problem. If you have been affected by this the only course of action is to uninstall and reinstall WhatsApp. The following measures may assist you in avoiding these WhatsApp crash messages:

  • Back up your chat history at least once a week (if you encounter a message like this and reinstall your application without backing up your chats. You will lose your chat history)
  • If you receive messages with unusual symbols, you should delete block the contact using WhatsApp Web.
  • This could be a very big problem for groups. A possible remedy for this is changing your group’s privacy setting so that only certain people have the permission to add individuals to groups.

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