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Indians Harassed by Spam Calls Flood on WhatsApp

 MUMBAI (BBC) – WhatsApp has asked users to block and report suspicious accounts after several Indians complained about receiving spam calls from unknown international numbers.

Indian WhatsApp users have been sharing screenshots of such audio and video calls on social media. With 487 million users, India has WhatsApp’s largest user base.

A government spokesperson said “service providers have issued an advisory” about these spam calls.

Users have been sharing screenshots online – with many saying they have been flooded with calls from countries in Southeast Asia and Africa. Most of them have said that the frequency of these calls has gone up several time in recent days.

In its statement to NDTV, the messaging platform advised users to use privacy controls on the app and to safeguard their accounts by making personal details visible only to their contacts.

“It’s important to report these accounts to WhatsApp so that we can take the required action against them and ban them from the platform,” a spokesperson for the company told the Times of India newspaper.

As part of its “preventive actions to combat abuse” on the platform, WhatsApp said it had banned 4.7 million accounts in March.

The company also said it had launched a safety campaign to educate users about tools on the platform that would help protect them from online scams, frauds, and other threats.

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