SMS packet scams: how to protect yourself from this growing phenomenon

SMS packet scams: how to protect yourself from this growing phenomenon

According to a study carried out by the German university FAU in 2016, 45% of users would click on links received by email or SMS, even when they do not know the source. terovesalainen / stock.adobe.com

SMS scam attempts against smartphone users have multiplied since the beginning of the summer, making the “smishing” technique increasingly formidable. explanations.

Your package has been shipped, please check it.“, “VYou have to pay €1.90 VAT for your package and avoid customs clearance costs (€15)“, “VYour Facebook account has been compromised, enter your credentials“. These text messages are probably familiar to you. Rest assured: you are not an isolated case. During the summer, a very high number of users commented on Twitter that they had received these types of messages on their smartphones. “The phenomenon is not new, but it is increasing, so… be careful not to fall into the trap by clicking on a fraudulent link!warns David Sygula, a cybersecurity expert at the start-up CybelAngel. Despite the doubt that legitimately affects a person who receives such a message, it is indeed “pure scams“assures.

Just like phishing via email, smishing (SMS + phishing) is a scam method carried out via smartphone. More precisely, it is up to the scammer to pressure a recipient to communicate their personal data (passwords, etc.) or bank details by posing as an official body. According to the French cybersecurity publisher, Sekoia. No less than 70,000 booby-trapped SMS were sent in mid-July. “But there is little doubt that this figure is actually much higher. All the operators have been victims, and then it costs the cybercriminals practically nothingexplains the specialist in cyber threats.

How to recognize a case of smishing?

It is often difficult to detect a cyber attack, but if the smartphone starts to be idle or rows more than usual, “is already a bad indicator“.”Especially since many people do not have their antivirus software updatedadds David Sygula. However, there are ways to detect possible fraud. For example, the language used in the text message (mistakes, meaningless phrases) can arouse suspicion. “But there are not necessarily huge misspellings and language barriers for the simple reason that mileage works for hackers too.he shades In other words, cybercriminals don’t necessarily go to the other side of the world to set up their scams. Otherwise, users can refer to the URL. If the address noted in the SMS does not refer to an official URL (that of the site in question)”It is already a warning and a bad signconfirms David Sygula.

The most common smishing attacks are those used by the most prominent brands, such as Netflix, Amazon or Colissimo. The goal of the scammers iscast a wide net and reach as many people as possible in a minimum of time“says the expert to CybelAngel. And even if the click rate is low, the operation is still profitable for these deception aces. Because smishing is based on a sense of urgency. “You just need to wait for a delivery for it to work. It is profitable from 0.001% for hackers“explains the specialist. During 2020, 17% of requests for assistance on the Cybermalveillance.gouv.fr platform. worried phishing. This is the number 1 threat to people according to a government report published on the same platform.

What precautions to take?

Obviously, it is recommended to adopt a vigilant attitude so as not to fall into the traps of cybercriminals. Being slower, adopting a vigilant attitude and good control reflexes, such as regularly updating antivirus software, are precautions that can allow us to avoid an SMS scam, which often causes a lot of anxiety.

In case of suspicion of smishing, any user can transfer the SMS in question to the number 33700 or report it by message on Internet-Signement.gouv. “There is real utility in declaring it, David Sygula seems convinced. The authorities handle messaging scam cases very efficiently.“.


SEE ALSO – Cybercriminals steal the source code of video games developed by EA

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