Congratulations!!! We entered your phone number in a lottery contest and we are pleased to inform you that you’ve won $10,000. Your cheque is ready or we can transfer it online as well. Just click on this link and blah blah blah… We all get these types of fake messages everyday right? But what is the story behind them? Let’s discover it in today’s “cybersecurity what is it” article.
Everyday Traps (cybersecurity explained)
Don’t we all get these types of SMS every day? Messages that tell us that we have won a lottery out of nowhere, or that some deceased prince has left all his money to us and we just need to spend some money (which sound pennies compared to the promised return) to acquire our prize. I’m sure some of us here are well familiar with these types of scams, but many of the people out there are good-hearted enough to believe these scams and end up losing their hard-earned money.
Elders are most prone to smishing
In the recent stats, the elderly and retired were among the majority who fell for these scams and lost their money. As people over 55 or 65 don’t prefer using the internet much, the hackers and scammers tend to lure them through “Smishing” Smishing is a portmanteau of “SMS” and “Phishing” Phishing is basically when someone lures you into an online scam. People all around the world have lost millions of dollars in these scams. But what are the types of SMiShisng? Let’s learn about them in this “cyber safety” awareness article.
Types of SMiShing
There can be many types of Smishing. Most scammers try to sound as much legitimate as possible. They’ll pose as FBI agents, your bak agents, Government employees, your network operators, and whatnot. Some of the types are:
- A Government officer asking for your information.
- Your bank agent telling you about a supposed problem and asking your credentials to fix that issue.
- Fake interlinks in SMS that directs you to a scam website.
- Someone asking you help by sending emotional SMS.
- A company telling you that you have won a lottery and now you need to submit a small amount of money to withdraw the cash.
What is common here?
All of these messages have something in common. They are designed very carefully to lure you into a trap. Sometimes, these messages are so well-crafted that even the world’s most successful copywriter and advertising people may admire them. These messages always urge you to act quickly. They try to play on your nerves and emotions. They’ll remind you of your financial situation and then reassure you by saying that you have a solution in the form of the millions of dollars which you have just won.
So, how can you save yourself?
Unfortunately, no cybersecurity tool can save you from it but yourself. You need to be extra careful when dealing with such messages. Here’re a few tips to help you:
- Don’t respond to such messages unless you are sure about who the sender is.
- If someone claims to be from your bank or Government department and demands your personal information, immediately contact that concerned department and confirm the authenticity.
- If the message seems too obvious, report it to a cybersecurity bureau or network operator.
- Inform your network provider about the number you’re receiving scam texts from.
- Never, ever transfer your money at any point. Often your phone will have credit card installed or configured in it and by just tapping once, the money can be transferred. So be fully attentive towards it.
- Block these numbers immediately.
While Smishing may sound somewhat easy to handle, the statistics say otherwise. Often we are out of focus and act on our emotions instead of logic. But by being a bit more attentive and careful, we can save ourselves from losing a large amount of hard-earned money. Also, if you want your online data to be protected as well, use our app. It’s recommended by thousands of users who appreciate the app. If you have any questions regarding cybersecurity, using the app or any other privacy-related question, e-mail me at “[email protected]”
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