A surge in Smishing Cyber Attacks

    Smishing or technically called as phishing attacks via Short Messages are on the rise says a research conducted by cybersecurity firm ESET. The attack horizon is simple, a user is tricked into downloading a Trojan horse, virus or other malware onto a smartphone and the malware tends to transmit all sensitive info to remote servers handled by hackers.

    And as text messaging apps are on the rise as they are termed to be the best alternative forms of electronic communication, it makes the concern more severe on the vulnerability scale.

    For instance, a recent smishing scam involving Argos- a British catalog retailer is enough to enlighten our minds on this issue. It said that a few hundreds of people received a fake Argos text messages saying they have a package to be collected. The message also included a link for £160 on an Argos card.

    As the message was identical to what Argos sends to its customers on a normal note, many people fell prey to the scam by clicking on the link and entering their bank account details deteriorating the situation.

    Cybercrooks are found ingeniously making money through such scams because users tend to trust text messages, as opposed to the email of which many people have become suspicious due to the rise in awareness regarding phishing email attacks.

    Security expert Stephen Cobb from ESET said that people can fight such smishing scams by deleting all suspicious messages which do not appear to have come from the genuine sender. Remember, never tap on the link included in the message and do not reply to that text.

    At the same time, scanning your mobile phone with efficient Anti-malware solutions from time to time also helps smartphone users from falling prey to such scams in the future.

    Do keep a tab on your mobile bill and see if you have been charged for any premium messages. If so speak to your mobile carrier on the issue and raise a complaint.

    While shopping for products and services online, go only for the reputed ones. Never give away your credit card and debit card info on any website which you come across online as it can act as an invite to future troubles.

    Always, check for a symbol “Https” while accessing shopping websites and use 2-way authentication in transactions.

    Naveen Goud
    Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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