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Technology

PTA approaches WhatsApp over hacking of Pakistani users

PTA says it intended to get details of users targeted in Pakistan but also to have an update on the remedial measur
21 Dec, 2019
  • PTA says it intended to get details of users targeted in Pakistan but also to have an update on the remedial measures taken by WhatsApp.
  • Reports circulated regarding WhatsApp users in Pakistan being targeted with a hacking software.

Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has approached the management of Whatsapp, the Facebook-owned messaging platform, after reports of WhatsApp users in Pakistan being targeted with a hacking software.

“PTA has taken up the matter with WhatsApp management,” PTA said in a statement. The telecommunication authority added that it intended to get the details of users that were targeted in Pakistan but also to have an update on the remedial measures taken by WhatsApp to prevent the occurrence of such hacking steps in the future.

"The public is advised to upgrade the WhatsApp application to latest version and keep the device Operating System up to date in order to avoid such incidents,” the authority added.

"Affected individuals are requested to contact PTA at [email protected]," it added.

Just days ago, it was learnt that the PTA has blocked a total of 933,775 uniform resource locators (URLs) so far carrying objectionable/pornographic images, texts and videos in the country.

According to data available with Business Recorder, the PTA has blocked/processed URLs containing objectionable materials including anti-judiciary, 6,182, anti-state, 13,175, blasphemy, 53,654, defamatory/impersonation, 2,915, miscellaneous, 4,633, pornography, 831,674, proxy, 10,196 and sectarian/hate speech, 11,346.

Under section 37 of PECA, the PTA has the powers to remove or block information through any information system if it considers it necessary, under following categories; (a) blasphemy (against glory of Islam), (b) anti-state (against integrity, security or defence of Pakistan), (c) public order, (d) contempt of court, (e) pornography (against decency and morality), (f) and incitement of any offence under provisions of PECA 39.

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