What is Smishing and How Can You Protect Your Information?

Z-JAK Technologies Gives Tips on Keeping Data Safe

Contact: Jeff Chandler
Z-JAK Technologies
[email protected] | https://zjak.net
O: (502) 200-1169

LOUISVILLE, KY (Sep. 6, 2022) – Recently, the FCC issued an alert warning of the increasing onslaught of smishing (SMS phishing) attacks attempting to steal personal data and money.

“Hackers are using this effective and easy method of phishing individuals on their phones to gain access to accounts and steal your money and your identity,” said Jeff Chandler, CEO, Z-JAK Technologies.

Confused woman looking at cell phone

What is Smishing and How Does It Work?

Cybercriminals trick individuals into entering sensitive information by sending text messages about bank problems, unclaimed bills, package delivery issues, and law enforcement actions to name just a few. The most successful smishing campaigns use simple website redirects to impersonate bank and services websites to con individuals into entering credentials and/or multi-factor authentication (MFA) codes the criminals can then use to access your information, said Chandler.

“In some cases, attackers are creating realistic websites and email addresses making you believe the messages are coming from reliable sources like your bank or credit card company. Once they have your credentials, account information, and multifactor codes, they can gain access to your accounts making fraudulent purchases, transferring money, stealing identify information, or simply selling your account access to other criminals,” said Chandler

By clicking the links contained within these fake messages, you are added to a list of people who have live numbers and follow these links. This allows hackers to target you again and again, he said.

“The threat is increased when individuals give additional data, including credentials or MFA codes via these links. You’re providing these criminals with everything they need to access all your sensitive information,” said Chandler.

Protecting Your Information

There are action steps you can take to reduce the chance you’ll be a victim. Chandler says the FCC recommends the following:

  • Do not respond to texts from unknown numbers or any others that appear suspicious.
  • Never share sensitive personal or financial information by text.
  • Lookout for misspellings or texts that originate from an email address.
  • Think twice before clicking any links in a text message.
  • If a friend sends you a text with a suspicious link that seems out of character, call them to ensure they weren’t hacked.
  • If a business sends you a text you weren’t expecting, look up their number online and call them back.
  • Remember that government agencies almost never initiate contact by phone or text.
  • Report texting scam attempts to your wireless service provider by forwarding unwanted texts to 7726 (or “SPAM”).
  • File a complaint with the FCC.

With more than 35 years of experience in the technology field, Z-JAK Technologies (zjak.net) helps small businesses maximize the benefits of technology without worry. Z-JAK Technologies puts an end to clients’ technology headaches by keeping their data safe from hackers, helping them understand and implement updated systems by eliminating inefficient processes and replacing them with cost-effective, high-performance systems. Named Best Cyber Security Training & Consulting Firm 2022 – Kentucky by Wealth and Finance Magazine, Z-JAK offers a Virtual Chief Technology Service for companies without full-time IT leadership and a comprehensive cyber security consulting program. For more information visit https://zjak.net/