After group chats, WhatsApp has reportedly exposed web users’ phone numbers through indexing on Google users. A few days ago it was reported that WhatsApp groups have appeared on Google search, which means that any group can search and join it by searching the group on Google search.
What data is not shared with Facebook
According to security researcher Rajasekhar Rajaria, the phone numbers of WhatsApp web users have appeared on Google search. WhatsApp is a mobile application but the appcan also be used on laptops and PCs. Rajaharia told IANS, “The leaks are happening through WhatsApp on the online . If someone is using WhatsApp on a laptop or office PC, the mobile numbers are being indexed. These are the mobile numbers of the business numbers. ” . He had also shared some screenshots with the publication. This is rather dangerous because a lot of professionals use WhatsApp from their laptops and PCs.
A few days ago, group chat links were available on Google search. As a result, one can only search the group name on Google and join a group on WhatsApp using the link. The problem has arisen due to indexing but now the WhatsApp group chat link has now been removed from Google.
“Despite advising WhatsApp users and deleting group chat links already exposed by Google, mobile numbers are now being indexed via the WhatsApp web application,” Rajahria said in a statement. However, WhatsApp soon took cognizance of the vulnerability and issued a press release .
WhatsApp stated, “Since March 2020, WhatsApp has included the” no index “tag on all deep link pages, which consistent with Google, will exclude them from indexing. We have given our response to Google for not indexing these chats. As a reminder, whenever someone joins a gaggle , everyone therein group gets a notification and therefore the administrator can cancel or change the group invite link at any time.
“Like all content shared across searchable, public channels, publicly posted links on the web are often found by other WhatsApp users. Links that users want to share privately with people they know and trust should not be posted on a publicly accessible website, ”the statement read further.
A similar issue came up in November 2019. The group chat had appeared on Google search. However, the issue was reported to Facebook by a security researcher and was rectified.