10 tips on how to avoid SMiShing (SMS phishing)

    10 tips on how to avoid SMiShing (SMS phishing)

    Posted by Steven Lai
    Tue, Apr 04, 2017

    Mobile devices are used thousands of times every day by billions of people. Everyone now socializes through apps and text messages. Mobile devices are a great tool to connect with one or another, however privacy and cyber hackers  can be a risk factor to consider when thinking about Cyber Security.

    Fake_Prize_Text_Message_SmiShing_Mobile_Hacking_method  

     

    Build your own device or
    Build your own danger?

    There are cyber criminals that will try to hack into an individual's phone to access emails, contacts, photos and apps that may be associated with bank accounts. This is truly a new danger in the world of BYOD (bring your own device).  However , when looking at the  acronym BYOD, the D seems to represent danger, more than device. The reason why the D in the acronym, seems to represent danger more is because of SMiSHing; a new mobile hacking method. 

     What is SmiShing?

     SmiShing or SMS phishing is about sending false, fake text messages, claiming the mobile user that they have won a free product. Within the fake text message, there is a fake URL link that would lure the individual into clicking the link. After the user has clicked the link, that is when the hacking starts.

     

    Robber_Hacking_into_phone_By_SmiSHing

    It is possible to prevent yourself from becoming a victim of SmiShing.  Here are ten major, helpful tips on how to avoid SmiShing.

    10 Helpful tips on preventing SMiShing

    1. Avoid clicking on any UNKNOWN messages with links. Furthermore, think about who sentyou the message. Is it a person that you know?
    2. Do not reply to text messages that have asked you about any of your personal finances.
    3. If you have received any messages in regards to your business assets or the partnerships that you have with them and/or the bank that is associate with them, call the business or businesses to see if it is a legitimate request before responding.   
    4. Be on the lookout for messages that contain the number "5000" or any number that is not a phone number. This is a strategy where scammers have masked their identity so their location and identity are not traceable.
    5. If the text messages (along with the unknown number) urges for a quick reply then that is a clear sign of SmiShing! Don’t Respond!
    6. Do extensive research before replying to any message. There are plenty websites that allow anyone to run search based on a phone number and see any relatable information about whether or not a number is legit.
    7. Never call back a phone number that was associated with the text that you are unaware of.
    8. If the message states " Dear user, congratulations, you have won...." It is a clear sign for SmiShing and let's be real, nothing is life is free”.
    9. Check the time when the unknown message was sent. If the text message was sent at an unusual time, then that is a another sign of SmiShing.
    10. Make sure to be aware and informed of your bank apps policy. It is important to acknowledge there is a policy that protects your money along with other personal information that is associated with the bank account.  

    Sources: 

    1. http://www.networkworld.com/article/2164211/infrastructure-management/how-to-avoid-becoming-a-victim-of-smishing-sms-phishing.html

    2. https://www.lifewire.com/protect-yourself-from-smishing-sms-phishing-attacks-2487626

     

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    Topics: cybersecurity, email security, SmiShing

    Written by Steven Lai

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