On Friday, Tencent announced that its messaging app WeChat was hacked, but the security breach has been quickly remedied. WeChat is an all-in-one communications app allowing free text (SMS/MMS), voice & video calls, photo sharing and games. The app is available on iOS and has more than 600 million users.
Tencent also offers the eWallet service named Tenpay for Chinese clients who want to pay for goods and services using the app. The company said that clients who used both WeChat and Tenpay can relax, as no user data or money was endangered by the attack.
The only affected users were the ones using the 6.2.5 version of WeChat.
"This flaw, based on an external hack attempt, has been repaired and will not affect users who install or upgrade WeChat version 6.2.6 or greater, currently available on the iOS App Store," reads a post on Tencent's blog.
The WeChat team reassured its users that the software company has a significant history in combatting hacking attempts, which allows it to quickly neutralize a threat discovered in the system. Users can also help by notifying the developers immediately of any suspicious behavior of the app .
British police officers issued a warning in August over a WeChat scam where users were offered offline sexual services after purchasing online shopping credits or gift cards. CNBC showed in material that mobile messaging apps, WeChat included, have been used by cybercriminals for stealing sensitive information and transferring it to an unknown server.
Hacking continues to be a major problem for businesses. Most recently, the CEO of cheating website Ashley Madison resigned after it suffered a significant virtual attack that led to the leak of millions of customers' personal information. A few weeks later, health insurer Excellus BlueCross BlueShield also became the subject of a cyberattack. As a result, confidential data from over 10 million members was disclosed.
Since Sept. 12, the latest iOS edition of WeChat has been updated and is now safe to be used again.
Software security experts agree that staying up to date with all software and apps places users one step ahead of the hackers.