5 Easy Ways to Stay Safe on Whatsapp
From hiding your display photo to turning on two-factor authentication, here are five easy things to follow and stay safe on WhatsApp.
These days WhatsApp has become our super convenient platform for instant messages, calls, and even video calls. The fact that you can call, text and video call your contacts from a single platform makes things much easier for us.
Since WhatsApp calls and chats are end-to-end encrypted, we need not worry about anyone intercepting your messages or calls.
However, while your messages and calls are safe, there are several harmful elements that scam, manipulate and harass people on the platform.
Here are simple steps you can follow and be safe on WhatsApp:
1. Control your profile picture
WhatsApp has an option to hide your profile picture from those who are not in your contacts. Go to "Settings", click "Account", and then click "Privacy". Here you will see "Profile picture". WhatsApp has the facility to control who can see your profile picture and you can choose between Everyone, Nobody and My contacts.
Better to select Nobody or My Contacts on the safer side.
2. Enable two-factor authentication (2FA)
This feature double-lock your WhatsApp account. At the first level, you can protect your WhatsApp account by placing a lock code, or a face unlocks, or a fingerprint locks in the application so that no one but you can open it. Then the second level is the addition of a registered number.
With the second one, whenever you change your primary device and need to set up your WhatsApp account on a new device, the application will send an OTP to your registered number. You should enter this OTP to unpair the old phone and configure the application on the new device.
If you haven't activated it by yourself and you get an OTP all of a sudden, ignore it and don't share it with anyone. Block the person requesting this OTP right away.
3. Block people you won't "chat with"
You need to save many numbers in your phone book that you do not intend to chat on WhatsApp as well. Like a local store calling and ordering things, or a delivery/courier service agent who needed location help once and added them to the contact list for that.
It is easier to select and block a contact on WhatsApp than it is to find them in the contact list and delete their contacts. This will also prevent unnecessary messages from being sent to you.
4. Do not accept the voice or video calls from unknown numbers
You see the number when the call comes in, but don't answer it unless you recognize it. Or unless you know you asked the person to call you. This is especially important for video calls because there is no way to prevent the front camera from turning on the moment you answer the call.
If you need to make a video call from an unknown number, cover the front camera manually so that the person on the other end cannot see you until you allow it.
5. Do not answer calls/ reply to messages from bizarre codes
The country code for India is +91, so you will be able to recognize local numbers if they call you or send you a message. But if you see some bizarre code, ignore the message/call to be safe.
Often, scammers mask their numbers to look like international calls to fool people. If you have friends/relatives living abroad, make sure they tell you what number they are calling from so you can save it.