Keeping your people and data safe
Specialists in Microsoft products and services
Access your email and documents on the go, wherever you are
How many text messages from companies do you receive today as compared to about two years ago? If you’re like many people, it’s quite a few more.
This is because retailers have begun bypassing bloated email inboxes. They are urging consumers to sign up for SMS alerts for shipment tracking and sale notices. The medical industry has also joined the trend. Pharmacies send automated refill notices and doctor’s offices send SMS appointment reminders.
These kinds of texts can be convenient. But retail stores and medical practices aren’t the only ones grabbing your attention by text. Cybercriminal groups are also using text messaging to send out phishing.
Phishing by SMS is “smishing,” and it’s becoming a major problem.
Case in point, in 2020, smishing rose by 328%, and during the first six months of 2021, it skyrocketed nearly 700% more. Phishing via SMS has become a big risk area. Especially as companies adjust data security to a more remote and mobile workforce.
If you haven’t yet received a text message only to find your own phone number as the sender, then you likely will soon. This smishing scam is fast making the rounds and results in a lot of confusion. Confusion is good for scammers. It often causes people to click a malicious link in a message to find out more details.
Cybercriminals can make it look like a text message they sent you is coming from your number. They use VoIP connections and clever spoofing software.
If you ever see this, it’s a big giveaway that this is an SMS phishing scam. You should not interact with the message in any way and delete it instead. Some carriers will also offer the option to delete and report a scam SMS.
Smishing is very dangerous right now because many people are not aware of it. There’s a false sense of security. People think only those they have given it to will have their phone number.
But this isn’t the case. Mobile numbers are available through both legitimate and illegitimate methods. Advertisers can buy lists of them online. Data breaches that expose customer information are up for grabs on the Dark Web. This includes mobile numbers.
Less than 35% of the population knows what smishing is.
It’s important to understand that phishing email scams are morphing. They've evolved into SMS scams that may look different and be harder to detect.
For example, you can’t check the email address to see if it’s legitimate. Most people won't know the legitimate number that Amazon shipping updates come from.
Text messages also commonly use those shortened URLs. These mask the true URL, and it’s not as easy to hover over it to see it on a phone as it is on a computer.
You need to be aware of what’s out there. Here are some of the popular phishing scams that you may see in your own text messages soon.
This scam happened to a community in South Carolina. They had recently had an installation of AT&T fiber internet lines in their neighborhood. Following the installation, AT&T did a customer drive to sign people up for the service.
During this time, one homeowner reported that he received a text message. It pretended to be from AT&T about scheduling his fiber internet installation. He thought it was suspicious because the address they gave was wrong. The scammer had wanted him to text back personal details.
Another recent smishing scam is a text message that doesn’t say who it’s from. It says, “Thank you for your recent payment. Here is a free gift for you.” It includes a link at the bottom of the message.
This is a widespread scam that many have noted online. And it’s an example of a scammer using a common fact. The fact that most people would’ve paid some type of bill recently and mistake the text to be from a company they know. It also lures people in with the promise of giving them a free gift.
Smishing scams are very clever and can easily infect your device with malware. Do you have the proper security precautions (mobile antivirus, DNS filtering, etc.)?
Our customers need a reliable IT support provider that is prepared to make sure every support case is completed with a satisfactory conclusion for you the customer. With Sound Networks working alongside you, your staff and company will consistently benefit from:
Great customer service
Speak directly to support engineers
Fast response times
Sleeping well at night
Sound Networks IT provider
Providing IT support for the last 19 years, we have developed a wealth of knowledge and experience in the IT support field. Reaping the benefits of fast internet connections and modern tools, we are able to combine this with our acquired IT skill set to help us to help you. Most of our IT support is provided via remote session, but occasionaly an onsite visit is the only option, plus, sometimes it's just nice to see a friendly face instead! Some of the customers that chose to work with us in our first year of trading are still with us now, we like to think that says something.
Regular Technology Business Reviews to keep your IT on track and aligned with your business goals.
Raise cases via email, telephone, or support agent.
Friendly approachable support engineers that will find and fix problems.