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SMS scam: 4 foolproof techniques to spot fakes

© Lemon squeezer

Your phone vibrates and an SMS puts you on alert: your Netflix account has been suspended because your last payment could not be collected. You need to click on link to restore it. If you have received this type of message, it must be an SMS scam, also known as Smishing.

This threat is growing across the world. For example, the Federal Trade Commission reported that text message scams embezzled Americans $372 million in 2023 alone.

Good measures sense

And in fact, the cybersecurity company McAfee recently published a very informative article with advice on how to stop being fooled. Experts offer one main tip to avoid falling into the trap again: understand how companies contact their customers.

Indeed, if we rarely read contractual provisions, they often stipulate the way in which a brand will solicit its customers. As a general rule, no bank will send an SMS to its customers containing a link or an attachment. If so, you can be sure that it is a scam.

Companies also almost never ask for personal data to be sent back to them via SMS. If this is the case, the smishing attempt is proven. If in doubt, don't even bother opening them and delete them directly.

Some verification methods

McAfee also suggests always checking the source of the message. This is all the more essential as SMS messages become more and more credible and we can no longer really rely on the old methods of analyzing spelling or grammar.

You can, however, always check whether the email addresses or telephone numbers correspond to those of the organization in question. If you receive this type of message and want to know for sure, go directly to the mobile application or web service of the organization in question.

Specialists finally advise keeping up to date with the latest trends in smishing. On Lemon squeezer, we regularly inform you of popular scams. Among the other readings that we can suggest to you in France, the DGCCRF website is always informative, as are those of Que Choisir and 60 million Consumers.

If you have other personal methods to deal with SMS scams, do not hesitate to share them in the comments.

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Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116