Text Scams: Here’s What to Keep in Mind

Oct 28 . 3 m

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SMS Phishing Is on the Rise

The figures are in and it seems like fraud cases are on the rise. In 2021 SMS phishing is much more common than we’d like it to be and an increasingly sophisticated endevour.
Data from the Central Statistics Office indicates that fraud incidents have increased by up to 40% in the period up to June 2021. The large majority of these incidents were fraudulent attempts to obtain personal or bank details.

So, what do you need to be on the lookout for? Here’s what to keep in mind to keep your message inbox stays safe.

What Is SMS Phishing?

In a nutshell, SMS phishing is the term that is used to describe all fraudulent attempts to acquire individuals’ information via text messages by posing as well-known companies and service providers. Victims are often lured into thinking that their bank or internet provider is asking for details and end up sharing credit card details or personal information. This is often done through a fraudulent web link that is included in the text.

How Does SMS Phishing Work?

SMS Phishing relies on psychological manipulation to obtain information illicitly. Cybercriminals go to great lengths to portray legitimacy. After all, the closer the text message looks to the real deal, the easier it is for individuals to feel safe sharing their information. In the same vein, it is often the case that cybercriminals utilise illicitly use figures of authority such as celebrities or public persons to convey a stronger feeling of authenticity.

Recent Phishing Attempts in Ireland

With many cases having been recently reported, it is possible to identify some common patterns. For instance, many have received text messages that are disguised to look like a missed call notification and a clickable link. Others have also reported notifications claiming that it is not possible to fully activate internet access for a specific account. The text is also completed with a fraudulent ‘contact us’ link.

Apart from sketchy texts, there has also been a rise in scam calls from 038 numbers in an attempt to make unsuspecting individuals think that a call from a legit 083 number is being received.

As a rule of thumb, it’s important to ignore communication attempts that require you any information or click on any linking. It is also a good idea to verify directly with the organisation in question whether the information request originated from them or not.

While keeping your information safe is of paramount importance, staying connected is important too. If you’re looking for the best mobile deal, check out the best deals in Ireland here.


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