What is smishing and how do you recognize it?

While technology makes our lives a lot easier, it also has its downsides as criminals and scammers are reluctant to use it Take advantage of the users. With that in mind, it is normal to read “phishing”, “vishing”, or “smishing” messages. Next we explain what “smishing” means to protect yourself.

“Smishing”, like “phishing”, attempts to steal personal information and passwords and impersonate an entity or company.

Smishing is a technique of SMS fraud or mobile text messages that attempt to obtain the user’s personal information in order to use it with fraudulent intent. This is a technique similar to “phishing”, with the difference that “phishing” uses e-mails instead of SMS.

In this type of scam, cyber criminals send an email impersonating someone else, usually a bank or a verification service like WhatsApp. By deception, the victim gives him personal passwords or details of his credit or debit card.

Although the main goal is usually to steal information, sometimes the intent is simply to “infect” the device or even sell products that do not exist. This type of “smishing” is usually done by sending a message with a really attractive offer or with the information that a profit has been made.

These messages are usually accompanied by a link that takes the user to a fraudulent website that mimics the original and is designed to steal the user’s banking information, or that contains some kind of “malware” that tricks the user into installing a malicious application that gathers information from the terminal and sends it to third parties.

In other cases, the fraudulent SMS may include a phone number and an indication that the user must call in order to receive the win. These phones have Special conditionsso that they present a large expense to the user.

Although this type of scam has been gaining popularity recently due to WhatsApp-related attacks, it is actually quite an old technique as the first news of this type of attack was from 2008.

How do you protect yourself from “smishing”?

To protect yourself against such attacks, it is important not to trust SMS with unknown senders. Also, be wary of messages with misspellings or messages that have been poorly translated from English. Also, don’t rely on promotions from companies that have never bought anything.

On the other hand, users should never send confidential or personal information via SMS or click on the links contained in the SMS.

To avoid this type of attack, you have to always verify the sender. Often a quick Google search for the sender’s number is enough to get information. If indications of fraud are found, the number must be marked as spam so that the user cannot be contacted again.

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