Following the COVID-19 outbreak, Gartner says that SMS will become more vital for businesses that want to keep in touch with their customers at this time. Researchers expect to see 49 million customers opting to receive marketing messages from companies in 2020. However, based on research by Mavenier and GSMA, it is estimated between 5% to 20% of all SMS messages are spam or fraud-related. This study is also supported by a released figures from Action Fraud in April 2020, that the UK reported fraud and cybercrime cases related to COVID-19 with a total value of USD 2.6 million. Meanwhile, the US Federal Trade Commission recently said that Americans have lost over USD 12 million to COVID-19 scams since January. To avoid scam, spam, and phishing text and keep your team and customer safe you need to follow these basic steps on how to deal with SMS fraud.
Do not follow any links or respond to any SMS call to action
SMS fraud usually suggests you to click a link, call or text a number, or want you to reply to their messages. This “call to action” request is one of the biggest warning signs that you need to be aware of. When you receive a text message with a link, immediately begin to consider that it could be a fraud. Try to verify their credibility by finding their contact details online and get in touch directly to check if it really was a legitimate organization. Make sure you do this via a trusted contact number, such as the one listed on their website or the one that has been given in any previous contact you have had with them via email or post.
Pay attention to details and check any spelling or grammar errors
Legitimate companies will rarely, if ever, make spelling mistakes or grammatical errors. If the message doesn’t look professional, then it is probably a scam. Professional message usually is brief but doesn’t leave out important information. It is also error-free, be it for the spelling, grammar or syntax errors. If it is out of character or when you see something that’s even slightly inappropriate for the circumstances, be alert. If you received a scam message, it is important for you to report it, so others will not be the next victims.
Do not share any personal information
Another key thing when receiving an SMS scam is to never share any personal information to the sender. Legitimate organizations such as banks will never ask for your personal information, banking details, or pin through a message or text. If you receive a SMS that requires you to input your banking details, or authorise a fund transfer which you have neve requested, or ask you to carry out a test transaction, make sure to not respond to it and make note of the number and the content messages, event screenshot it as an evidence so you can report it.
Internet and SMS scams have existed for decades. However, a study by McAfee shows that over 79% of customers were unable to correctly identify phishing scams when we presented to them. Stay aware of the risk of SMS fraud and implement these key things to avoid scam, spam, and phishing text and keep your team and customer safe. Choosing the right partner for your SMS A2P Indonesia services can help you protect your team and your customers by having cybersecurity awareness against such social engineering attacks.
Was this information helpful?
With COVID-19 a global issue right now, criminals and attackers of SMS fraud and cybercrime have increasingly taken to using it as a lure, sending SMS claiming to be from sources including the World Health Organization, governments, and many more.
According to GSMA real-time intelligence data, today, there are 5.22 Billion people that have a mobile device in the world.
back to top