Don’t get scammed on WhatsApp. Follow these tips to know if a WhatsApp profile is fake.
Maybe you have encountered a commercial bot, a troll, or someone who is in charge of spamming WhatsApp. Over time, this messaging app can also become a direct route for scammers and victims. Or simply a direct communication channel for hoaxes, false information and fake news. If you suspect a profile, the best thing to do is to check all these keys to make sure it is not fake. Don’t be cheesed off on WhatsApp thanks to these keys and checks.
Pay Attention To The Profile Picture
It is one of the main keys to know if the user is fake. It is not a definitive key and may not appear, but there are resources that you should know so you do not get cheated with this element in WhatsApp.
The first thing, as is logical, is to attend to see if there is photo or not. It may happen that you are not saved as mutual contacts in each other’s address books and, for privacy reasons, the photos are not shown. Saving a contact in your address book does no harm and poses no danger per se, so it doesn’t hurt. You can also save it with a name that invites you to be suspicious until you verify their identity. Something like “suspicious” or “do not trust”. And, see if the profile picture appears or not.
If the profile picture does not appear, you should be suspicious. Few people avoid putting a photo in their profile. Even if it is not of him or herself. Although, if the photo is not a profile picture, i.e. of yourself, you should also be suspicious about the reliability of the profile. No one who normally uses WhatsApp uses photos with motivational phrases, landscapes and so on… They are usually their own photos. Or of their pets, or of their relatives.
Well, if a photo appears and we are suspicious of it, we always have the resource of reverse Google search. This is a function that allows us to search through a photo, finding similar results on the Internet, social networks and other websites. Very useful to know if the photo is stolen from another profile, for example, and it is a hoax. To do this:
- we just have to take a screenshot of the WhatsApp profile picture.
- Then we go to the Internet browser and search for Google Images.
- We go to the three dots at the top right (Google Chrome) and choose computer view.
- Now we can click on the camera icon, choose upload file and upload the capture with the profile picture
- Click on search and look at the results.
The results are more accurate if we have previously cropped the screenshot so that only the image is visible. And, if among these results is the same photo, we just have to click on it to see the origin. If it turns out to be from a social network of a person on the other side of the planet we will already have all the necessary clues to distrust that WhatsApp profile that has spoken to us. And, if there are no similar results, we can always apply the rest of the formulas in this article.
Pay Attention To The Messages
Obviously when a stranger writes to us by WhatsApp we are attentive to what he tells us. But here the important thing is to recognize patterns or formulas typical of fake profiles. And there are several that will give you the clue:
- Commits many spelling and grammar mistakes: one of the keys to Internet scams is that, on many occasions, they are perpetrated by users from other countries. They tend to use tools such as Google Translator to translate what they want to say from their language into Spanish, making mistakes and using incorrect or unnatural verbal forms. If you receive messages with strange grammar the best thing to do is to be suspicious.
- Respond very quickly and do not follow the conversation: it is possible that it is a profile governed by a bot or program. They can be used to spam or spread scams. Generally, conversations with these bots are activated when we write a message and, as the responses are preconfigured, they are usually triggered instantly. Or without an argument or logical thread on some occasions. So the conversations can be strange. It will seem to guide you to where the profile wants, and most likely end up sharing you a link or content, which is none other than their reason for writing to you.
- Beware of links: in WhatsApp there are few ways to infect your mobile or make you fall for a scam. Generally it is the links to external pages where the danger begins. So be wary if a stranger entices you to click on a link. You can always pay attention to the address in the message. Or even click to see the page. But the most advisable thing is never to click on a link sent to you by a stranger. For security reasons.
Pay Attention To The Phone Number And Whatsapp Account Type
One of the drawbacks of WhatsApp is that it works with phone numbers. And it is a personal and sensitive data that can be used for stalking, spamming and other forms of harassment. However, the positive side is that it also allows us to know where messages from a profile we do not know come from. And is that, every time a person we do not have in our address book starts us a conversation we receive the WhatsApp notice and we see their phone number. In addition, we can report it as Spam, add it as a user or simply ignore the message and the profile.
Well, it never hurts to do a search on the Internet for that phone number if we suspect the profile. Hopefully we will find their Facebook account or a reference on the Internet if it is associated with any public details. This way we will be able to know if the profile is fake or not. Of course, not everyone reflects the phone number on the Internet, but there are often websites and forums that record spam numbers and can give us this clue.
In addition, it is interesting to pay attention to the type of WhatsApp account. For example, it is possible to find WhatsApp Business accounts. This does not legitimize them to spam or harass other users. But sometimes it helps to reassure to know that there is a registered number and entity behind a professional account. Still, be wary if it complies with the rest of the keys. After all, it may be a scam disguised as a professional business.
Always Use Common Sense And Report When It Is Clear To You.
To avoid scams and bad situations the main key is usually common sense. If you do not expect a message from a stranger, or if they ask you for things, or if you are suspicious after doing the rest of the checks, avoid any kind of contact. You will save yourself a lot of trouble.
In addition, if you are certain that a WhatsApp profile is fake, the best thing you can do is to report it and report it. You can do it from the three points of the conversation, clicking on More and then choosing the Report option. This is the best way to avoid being scammed and to give WhatsApp a clue as to what kind of profile it is.