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Beware of Scams by Text

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"Smishing" is when scammers use text messaging to lure targets into sharing credit card numbers and other personal information. The name comes from combining Short Message Service or SMS (the technology used for text messages on cell phones) with phishing.


How It Works: 

  • Scammers send hundreds, or even thousands, of text messages at a time in the hope that even just a few recipients take the bait.
  • The text is urgent – you need to click on a link or call a number to deal with an issue like suspicious banking account activity or perhaps to address the suspension of an account or service. Or it could claim you’ve won a prize and you need to act right away.
  • The ultimate goal is to get you to share sensitive information – your bank account number, or user names and passwords – and to use this information to steal from you.

What You Should Know:

  • Scammers are banking on you responding quickly to a text message – we tend to trust them over emails.
  • It’s easy for scammers to make the text look like it’s coming from a legitimate phone number. 

What You Should Do:

  • Be wary of unsolicited text messages – when in doubt, delete.
  • Don’t respond to suspicious texts, even to tell them to leave you alone. Responding verifies to the crook that your number is valid, and that puts you at risk for being targeted by other scams.
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