Protecting Yourself from the Rising Threat of Banking SMS Scams

By: Dan Cooper

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Scammers are constantly coming up with new ways to trick us, and right now, SMS or smishing scams are on the rise. For instance, scammers are taking advantage of the Income campaign to pose as the Tax Agency and deceive users by sending malicious SMS messages. This is just one example of many, and the problem is only growing.

Recently, five people in Girona were arrested for stealing bank details by sending out mass SMS messages. This is just the latest case of SMS scams becoming increasingly common. Unfortunately, the lack of arrests makes this type of scam difficult to combat.

Scammers are often based in countries like Russia, India, and China, where they can evade law enforcement. Additionally, personal data leaks in security breaches enable scammers to acquire phone numbers and email addresses, which they then sell on the dark web.

Due to the increasing prevalence of SMS scams, extreme precautions are necessary to avoid falling victim. Here are a few essential tricks to keep in mind:

1. Activate two-step verification on your bank account to receive text verification messages for purchases.
2. Don’t trust emails from the Treasury, your bank, or other services that request personal information. Contact them to confirm that they made the request, and never click on any links.
3. Keep Windows Defender activated and updated on your computer at all times.

These simple steps can save you from falling prey to malicious SMS scams. Stay vigilant and stay safe.

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