There are messages circulating on WhatsApp that are causing the app and even Android smartphones to crash. Users who have received the messages are being discouraged from forwarding them.

Someone brought attention to the first message bomb by sharing the issue on reddit. According to the user, a message that says, “This is very interesting!” along with a face with tears of joy emoji is causing the WhatsApp app to crash. The reddit user indicated that the message is crashing WhatsApp for iPhone and that it is also messing up the whole system of some smartphones.

Neowin has learned the message could cause the WhatsApp app to lock up or crash back to the launcher and even take down the whole mobile operating system. The news site also pointed out that the innocent-looking line of text causes the browser tab to hang or become unresponsive.

The other message bomb was first discovered early last month and ScoopWhoop says it is also annoying a lot of users. The second message bomb says, “If you touch the black point then your whatsapp will hang,” and it also has a finger emoji pointing to a dot.

Users who couldn’t resist following the instruction or are just too curious to ignore the text learn the hard way that what they have stumbled upon is a message bomb. Tapping the dot converts the text to html and reveals the control character “&rlm” being repeated numerous times. The repetition is too much to handle that the app and the phone crash.

SlashGear explains that a message bomb is a specially crafted message that contains hidden symbols in between spaces. It is specially crafted because it is designed to lure users into tapping a portion of the text so the hidden symbols are expanded, which then overloads the app and even the entire operating system of the smartphone.

Thus far, reports are saying that the message bombs are capable of crashing both Android and iOS versions of the WhatsApp app. There are also complaints of Android phones being disrupted by the message bombs. Meanwhile, it is not clear if they also disrupt the operating system of iPhones.

Facebook, the owner of WhatsApp, has yet to comment on the two message bombs so far. But it’s safe to bet that it is already working on a fix to solve the problem. PhoneArena reports that it could take a few days for the company to come up with the right solution to the message bombs.

WhatsApp New message bombs are causing the WhatsApp Android app to crash. Photo: Reuters/Thomas White