French Hacker transcends Aadhaar UIDAI helpline number to millions of Android phones in India

French hacker named Robert Baptiste, who tweets with pseudonym Elliot Anderson has once again proved that nothing can be concealed from the hacking world. The latest controversy which is supposed to be created by him or is supposed to involve him in one way or the other proves this instance to the core.

It’s said that from yesterday evening millions of Android Phones in India started to get UIDAI helpline number on their phonebooks without their consent. And when Baptiste was questioned on this note, he admitted that it was his mischief and more will follow soon.

UIDAI, the government authority which gives a 12 digit identification number to each India has issued a statement a few hours ago that it did not authorize any telecom company or the mobile phone maker to pass on the Toll-free number 1800-300-1947 to Android phones operating across the subcontinent since yesterday.

The government authority also stated that the toll-free number which sneaked into the mobile phones of millions of users is outdated & invalid and the new one which is 1947 is the valid one which is working now and is fully operational from the past two years.

UIDAI’s clarification came after people from Indian started questioning the authority via social media on why the number is being pushed and saved by default in people’s contact list on Android phones.

The protocol through which the toll-free number was saved on the phone is yet to be known.

But some security experts suggest that the activity could have taken place by tweaking the Android operating system of Google to such an extent that the phone number can be passed on to the phone via WiFi or Mobile Data.

Imagine if something serious or nefarious reaches your phone. Then it can not only put an end to your phone but can also bring in immense embarrassment into your life without your knowledge.

A security expert from McAfee suggests that intrusion into android phone could also have taken place by data trackers placed on the mobile phones by Manufactures on a default note.

Reports have flown in from Twitter that users using Motorola, Lenovo, OnePlus, Samsung, Nokia, Mi, Redmi, fell victim to the latest cyber incident.

A source from the Aadhaar issuing authority says that smartphone manufacturers must have found the helpline number to be used as the emergency number and so could have installed it by default into the phone books.

But what about those who received the invalid Aadhaar toll-free number on their old handsets…..?

NOTE 1- Cybersecurity Insiders has gained info from a reliable source from UIDAI who on the condition of anonymity said that the toll-free number was passed to only those who downloaded the Mobile or PDF version of their Aadhaar onto their mobile devices or computers. As the mobile phone number acts as the password to open the downloaded version virtual Aadhaar to a certain extent, hackers could have targeted Android phones working with those phone numbers.

NOTE 2- Elliot was seen challenging Indian Prime Minister Shri Narender Modi last week to dare share his Aadhaar number in order to get his bank account hacked.

Naveen Goud
Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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