Fact Check: Does Sending Good Morning Messages Expose One's Private Banking Information?

The Logical Indian Fact Check team investigates the claim that Hackers in China have hidden “phishing codes” in Good Morning Images, receiving one will expose one’s private information.

India   |   21 July 2020 2:42 AM GMT
Editor : Bharat Nayak | Creatives : Abhishek M
Fact Check: Does Sending Good Morning Messages Expose One

A message which says that sending "Good morning" WhatsApp forwards can put the user on the danger of phishing is being circulated on social media platforms.

It further claims that sending Good Morning HD pictures, Good Night quotes, principally something 'pre-made' is embedded with phishing codes by hackers.

Below is the entire message:

The Logical Indian received multiple requests to fact check the claim.




The claim was viral last year as well.


Claim:

Hackers in China have hidden "phishing codes" in Good Morning Images, receiving one will expose one's private information.

Fact Check:

The claim is false.

There are no official warnings regarding this apparent threat from the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team or CERT-In. The CERT-In under the Information Technology Ministry is tasked with protecting Indians from cyber threats.

Below is a screenshot of the website of Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology. One can clearly see the latest memorandums issued by the ministry. None of those matches the viral forward.


What Is A Phishing Attack?

Phishing is one of the oldest forms of cyberattack that uses disguised email as a weapon. The goal is to hoodwink the email recipient into believing that the message is something they want or need. It could be a request from their bank or a note from someone in their company

What Are The Steps You Can Take For Protection?

According to cybersecurity agency, people must not open attachments in unsolicited emails, even if they come from known contacts.

One must not click on URLs in an unsolicited email, even if the link seems benign.

Any unusual activity or attack should be reported immediately at incident@cert-in.org.in with logs and email headers for analysis of the attacks and for taking action.

Further, the message, which has been circulating since the last couple of years is rife with grammatical errors that one would not find in an official communique.

The warning also does not include relevant details such as which websites or mobile apps are affected, or how the attack works from a technical perspective.

The message attributes the warning to 'Shanghai China International News'. However, no such media outlet was found.

Media portals with similar names are:

Shanghai Eye, China Plus News, South China Sea News, China Daily Asia, SHINE (Shanghai Daily).

A Malaysia based news portal, The Star, reported on the same hoax message 2 years ago and called it fake.

Digital Steganography

However, malware or phishing URLs can be attached to an image in a concealed manner, but such URLs may not necessarily just be restricted to good morning and good night messages.

The process of sharing malware in the form of image video or other digital sources is called 'digital steganography'. Most conventional malware detecting tools overlook such malware.

Through the method of Digital steganography, file, message, image or video can be concealed within another file, message, image or video.

If you have any news that you believe needs to be fact-checked, please email us at factcheck@thelogicalindian.com or WhatsApp at 6364000343.

Also Read: Fact Check: Govt Issued Memo On Restricting Chinese Apps From Google, Apple Stores?

Claim Review :  Hackers in China have hidden “phishing codes” in Good Morning Images, receiving one will expose one’s private information.
Claimed By :  WhatsApp Forwards
Fact Check :  False
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Aditi Chattopadhyay

Aditi Chattopadhyay

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"I like to read, cook my own food and note down witty lines. Fact checking reminds of the time when I was a kid and would go hunting for whatever caught my fancy in that moment."

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Bharat Nayak

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Abhishek M

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"Engineer by education, creative producer by profession, Photoshop interests me, travelling makes me happy, its a whole new world there every day"

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