Bykea, a widely used ride-hailing, mobility, and delivery app in Pakistan, recently fell victim to a hacking attack that left many users concerned and alarmed. The incident unfolded when users began receiving highly inappropriate text messages, causing distress and raising questions about the app’s security. Bykea promptly addressed the issue, issued an apology for the offensive messages, and took immediate steps to rectify the situation.
Details of the Incident:
According to Bykea, the offensive messages were sent through a compromised third-party communication tool. The first inappropriate notification appeared on users’ screens at around 12:10 pm, followed by another notification approximately 40 minutes later, indicating that the app was still hacked. Bykea’s CEO, Muneeb Maayr, disclosed that the hacking originated from a Bykea employee’s laptop in their Karachi office, which was accessed from outside the country. The compromised third-party tool lacked two-factor authentication, enabling the hackers to breach the system and gain unauthorized access to the application.
Bykea’s Response and Measures Taken:
Bykea swiftly issued a statement expressing apologies for the inappropriate messages and confirmed that the breach occurred through a third-party communication tool. The company assured users that their app and data remained safe and secure, and their team successfully restored the app’s functionality. Bykea encouraged users to reach out to their helpline if they encountered any issues.
Cybersecurity expert Etizaz Mohsin emphasized the importance of enhanced security controls for product companies to prevent such incidents. By implementing stronger security measures and effective controls, the risks of unauthorized access and breaches can be significantly minimized.
Bykea’s Future Plans:
Bykea has disabled the compromised software and announced plans to adopt an alternative tool with a two-factor authentication system to bolster security. The company aims to position itself as a national security app and make appropriate arrangements to ensure the highest level of safety for its users.
Addressing Speculations and Ensuring User Trust:
While some users speculated that the messages originated from India based on their content, Bykea’s CEO did not specifically mention any country. The focus remains on addressing the security breach and reinforcing trust among users. Bykea assured customers that they only store encrypted mobile numbers, and credit card data is managed by Bank Alfalah, alleviating concerns about the safety of user data.
Bykea’s hacking incident served as a wake-up call highlighting the need for robust security measures and continuous vigilance in the digital landscape. Bykea took immediate action to address the issue, apologized to users, and worked diligently to restore the app’s functionality. By implementing enhanced security protocols and proactive measures, Bykea aims to regain user trust and ensure the utmost safety and security for its users