An alleged WhatsApp ‘Argentina’ virus is apparently infecting users’ phones, at least according to a troubling message that is being sent out. The message is being distributed worldwide, informing users that if they open a message titled ‘Argentina is doing it,’ their phone will be hacked within 10 seconds. So is this message real, and is this supposed virus as problematic as it seems?
Is the WhatsApp Argentina virus real?
Concerns over the WhatsApp Argentina virus stem from a message that is being shared across the app and social media.
The message reads:
“just a heads up… they are going to start circulating a video on whatsapp that shows how the covid19 curve is flattening in argentina. the file is called argentina is doing it, do not open it or see it, it hacks your phone in 10 seconds and it cannot be stopped in any way.”
Fortunately for WhatsApp users, it seems that this so-called ‘Argentina is doing it’ virus is a hoax. There’s no evidence to suggest that such a virus exists, or that a virus is currently leading to phones being hacked or bricked within 10 seconds after opening it.
Additionally, the message erroneously claims that a CNN report has confirmed the existence of the virus. No such CNN report exists, with the above message being the only “evidence” that a virus is being circulated.
But if it’s a hoax, why is the above message so widespread? Like a lot of spam, it is being circulated by concerned WhatsApp users who want to ensure that others won’t be afflicted with an apparent virus. While well-meaning, the message is essentially a copypasta, copied and pasted and then spread across the internet without much thought given to its origins. As a result, the first person who posted the message is next to impossible to trace, given that it has now been shared so widely.
So there you have it — if you’re a WhatsApp user concerned about the alleged Argentina virus, there’s no need to be. The message is fake, so you can continue using the app safe in the knowledge that you won’t receive a virus from a conspiracy video.
In other tech news, Microsoft recently revealed that its Windows operating system would receive a big upgrade.