THE sure was ordered by the court to indemnify at R $ 20 thousand a client whose Whatsapp was “cloned”; she suffered cell line theft twice. Fraud with messaging applications is increasingly common: criminals typically take advantage of operator store systems to activate other customers’ lines on a new chip, which receives the activation code.
The plaintiff was the victim of the SIM swap scam (“cloning”) twice. In September 2018, she had WhatsApp hacked and a criminal borrowed money from contacts.
The customer purchased a new chip and recovered the line, but not the WhatsApp account – the attacker apparently entered a password when enabling two-step verification. The customer was then instructed by Claro to cancel the line and acquire a new number.
However, a week later his cell phone stopped working with the new number, and suffered the hit of SIM swap again. Worse, the previous line had not yet been canceled. The ruling does not indicate whether the WhatsApp account on the second line has been hacked.
The lawsuit accuses the operator of failure to provide the service, with recurrence of the problem. The author also mentions that it was not well attended by Claro. Initially, the court had ordered Claro to pay R $ 5,000 in compensation for pain and suffering, but the client appealed and the court set the amount of R $ 20,000, considering the principles of reasonableness and proportionality.
Enable two-factor authentication on WhatsApp
In the process, it is said that the author’s contacts continued to receive messages from the old number for a week, including asking for money. The customer even purchased a chip to recover this line; still, she was unable to access the WhatsApp account. It is very likely that the criminal has activated two-factor verification, preventing the application from being activated without the registered password.
Therefore, if you do not have 2-step authentication enabled in WhatsApp, it is important to configure it. The same goes for Telegram and other messaging applications. With this added protection, even if a criminal is able to steal your line, it is impossible to access the app without knowing the password.
The SIM swap scam has already caused losses of up to R $ 80,000 in the country. It is informally called “cloning” in reference to the old CDMA lines, which could be stolen and used on two cell phones at the same time. This does not happen in GSM, but in this technology, a line can be transferred to another chip without the customer’s authorization.
With information: Legal Adviser.