Like phishing emails, cyber criminals are targeting victims through smishing attacks, which means they send harmful messages via SMS and text, in the hope that you react to these messages by clicking a link or inputting your personal information.
How to spot a smishing scam?
Smishing scams are made to look like they are from a reputable company and can often be very convincing, they use realistic information and formatting which makes them easy to mistake as genuine.
There are a few things you should look out for when you receive any text:
- Spelling and grammar mistakes
- Scaremongering tactics to worry you into thinking your account is in danger
What should you do if you are unsure the text is real?
Never click on any links in the text message or call any of the numbers on the text, instead find the correct number to contact the company on their official website (using a Google search) and call the company directly to query the text message.
It’s always better to be safe than sorry, so be sure to never click a link if you are at all unsure, delete the message and call the company for confirmation.
What happens if you respond?
Cyber criminals can be very convincing, using information they have gathered about you to convince you that a message is real and anyone could fall victim to an attack. To ensure you are doing all you can to stay safe if you think you may have received a smishing text, be sure to do the following things:
- Change your passwords for all of your accounts, including your email account and online banking
- Contact your bank and make them aware of the situation
- Contact the company who the text is pretending to be from