Now that you’ve seen the headline, go and update your WhatsApp Desktop app right now. Whether you’re on Windows or macOS, there’s a security flaw in older versions of the app that could allow access to the files on your machine.
The flaw can be exploited by receiving a special message, one designed to give its sender access to files and other information on your computer. Sounds familiar — though probably not quite as problematic. The folks over at PerimeterX explain exactly how the exploit works and what sort of information can be accessed. Long story short, the affected versions of the app were made with an outdated version of Google’s browser engine, Chrome 69.
Whose line is it anyway?
Should you worry? As long as you’ve kept WhatsApp Desktop up to date, no. The flaw affects versions of of WhatsApp Desktop 0.3.9309 and earlier, when paired with WhatsApp for iOS versions before 2.20.10. That’s quite a specific combination.
Happily, if you run an update on your WhatsApp Desktop app, the vulnerability won’t be a problem. You really should be keeping all of your software as updated as possible anyway so just… add this to the list. And, if there are no update files available and you’re not running one of the versions above, you’re already sorted.