PSA: Watch Out For This Link, It Will Crash Your Phone, Computer

Android / iOS / Mobile / Security / Tech
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Jokes are fun, right? Well, they’re fun right up until they aren’t. I’d imagine this joke falls into the latter category of “not fun.” There’s a link getting passed around that looks innocent enough, but when you follow that link you’ll be in for an unpleasant surprise. The link uses just a few simple lines of code to eat up all available memory in your device, causing your phone, or possibly even your computer to crash.

First and foremost some good news: This link does not inject any malicious code, and it does not have nefarious intentions at this time. It simply causes your browser to write thousands of characters per second to the address bar, tearing through your available memory and causing your phone to crash. The link works in both Safari and Chrome, so iOS and Android users are affected equally. Depending on the hardware you’re running on your computer, your laptop or desktop computer could be affected as well.

Even more good news: The entire issue can be resolved by rebooting your phone or computer, though depending on what you were working on before getting duped that could be a huge inconvenience on its own. iOS devices may just reboot by themselves, Android users may be able to quit out of Chrome before a reboot is required.

I shouldn’t have to even say this, but we do not condone sending this link out to anybody. We won’t even link to the actual page in this article. But do keep an eye open for anything leading you to a site called “crashsafari” because you won’t have a good time there.

The Next Web outlines how “CrashSafari” does what it does:

It leverages HTML5’s history.pushState, a JavaScript function used by many single page applications to update the address bar, even though the underlying page being viewed doesn’t change.

Image Courtesy of TNW

Image Courtesy of TNW


So be on the lookout for anyone sending you this link, and be careful with any shortened links that you see. According to Twitter user @FSLabs, one shortened link leading to “CrashSafari” has been clicked over 100,000 times.

This prank can be avoided, just be sure to pay attention to the links that you’re following. At least as of right now this prank is simply an inconvenience and nothing more malevolent.

Did you get hit by “CrashSafari?” Let us know in the comments section or via any of your favorite social media sites.

  Source: The Next Web
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