Watch out for the Telegram screenshot hack and scam! Find out how the Telegram screenshot hack and scam works, and what you can do!
Telegram Screenshot Hack : New Twist To Old Trick
My friend just got hit by the Telegram screenshot hack, and the hacker is now trying to scam everyone on his contact list!
The Telegram screenshot hack is a new twist to an old trick, and here is how they do it…
Step 1 : Identify A Suitable Target
After obtaining a legitimate Telegram account through phishing or other means, the hacker reads through the messages to identify a suitable target – usually a close friend whom you often chat with, and trust.
For the purpose of our example, the hacker stole your friend’s Telegram account and has identified you as a suitable target.
Step 2 : Attempt To Login From Another Device
The hacker installs Telegram in another device and attempts to log into your account. He only needs the your phone number to do that.
The login attempt triggers Telegram to send a Login code to the your registered devices to authenticate the login. Usually, that’s the Telegram app in your smartphone.
Step 3 : Ask For A Screenshot Of Telegram
Traditionally, this is when the hacker will use your friend’s Telegram account to message you and ask for that Login code. However, asking for the Login code may trigger suspicion, so hackers have now come up with a new twist.
Instead of asking you for the Login code, the hacker will use your friend’s Telegram account to ask you to take a screenshot of your Telegram app and send it to him.
What harm is there? After all, many of us take screenshots and share them with family, friends and even on social media!
The problem is – the screenshot will accidentally reveal your Telegram Login code! Take a look at the actual screenshot my friend sent – it clearly shows the Telegram Login code!
Step 4 : Terminate All Other Sessions
The hacker will immediately use the Login code to log into your Telegram account on his device.
Then he will terminate all other sessions from that Telegram account, which means you get logged out from your Telegram app on your own smartphone!
Step 5 : Change Password
To prevent you from logging back in, and terminating his Telegram session, he will change the password.
Step 6 : Scam Your Friends
Now that the hacker gained control of your Telegram account and locked you out of it, he is free to scam your friends.
In this case, my friend’s contacts all started getting pleas to borrow money for some kind of emergency. The hacker will, of course, promise to pay you back quickly.
Your unsuspecting friends may not realise that this is not you that they are talking to, and may end up sending the hacker money.
In this case though, my friend managed to quickly alert us via WhatsApp that his Telegram account was hacked, so we didn’t tall for the scam.
One of his friends toyed with the scammer, and obtained the bank details. That is obviously not my friend’s name or account number!
Telegram Screenshot Hack : How To Prevent It?
Now that you know how the Telegram screenshot hack works, you can pretty much figure out how to prevent it.
Here is my quick summary for those who didn’t go through the whole process above :
- Do NOT send anyone your Telegram Login code. Not even anyone claiming to be working for Telegram.
- Do NOT send anyone a screenshot of your Telegram app. Even if it’s not a scam, it reveals portions of your chats!
- Turn on Two-Step Verification in Telegram. This lets you recover your account, even if you accidentally let someone take over your account.
Telegram Screenshot Hack : How To Recover Your Account?
If you failed to turn on two-step verification, there is still a way to recover your Telegram account after it is stolen by a hacker.
For these steps to work though, you need to have access to your phone number. You must also do this quickly, as the hacker will be alerted to your attempt.
Step 1 : Open Telegram.
Step 2 : Log into your Telegram account using your phone number.
Step 3 : You will be asked if you have the correct number. Click Yes.
Step 4 : Telegram will send a 5-digit code to all your devices with Telegram installed. You won’t receive it since the hacker has already terminated all other sessions.
Step 5 : Click on the option just above the keypad – “Send the code as an SMS“.
Step 6 : You will now receive an SMS with the 5-digit code. Key it in, and you will now have access to your Telegram account.
Step 7 : Go to Options > Settings > Privacy and Security.
Step 8 : Scroll down and tap on Devices.
Step 9 : Tap on the option – Terminate All Other Session – to boot out the hacker.
Bonus Step : Turn on Two-Step Verification to prevent this from happening again!
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.
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