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SMS (Short Message Services) phishing or smishing is a cybersecurity attack via mobile text messages. It is a variant of phishing, wherein the victim is tricked into giving sensitive information to an anonymous attacker. A cybercriminal sends fraudulent text messages and seeks to deceive the recipient into clicking a malicious link. They aim to steal the victim’s personal data, which they will further use to commit other cybercrimes.

 

 

Cybercriminals generally use two methods to steal data - 

 

Malware

The URL link can trick the victim into downloading malicious software on their mobile device. This SMS malware may mask itself as a legitimate app and trick the user into feeding their personal information and making it accessible to the criminal.

 

Malicious website

The link attached in the smishing message may lead to a fake website that will request the user to provide their sensitive information. Cybercriminals use customized malicious sites, which is a good imitation of a legitimate website, making it easier for them to deceive their victims.

 

Dealing with SMS Phishing Security Threat

If someone is doubtful of a text message, then there are ways they can deal with the same by -

 

1.     Not responding

If the user feels that a particular text message is fake, they should not engage.

 

2.     Slowing down

If ever faced with an SMS text stating that it requires urgent response or action, then the user should carefully read the context and act accordingly after ensuring the message is legitimate.

 

3.     Speaking directly to the Bank

Trustworthy banking institutions never request account updates or login information through text. Any urgent notice can be authenticated directly by checking online accounts or calling the official helpline.

4.     Using Multi-factor authentication

An exposed password might still not be useful to a cybercriminal if the account getting breached requires a second key for authentication. MFA’s general variant is two-factor authentication which adds an extra layer of security.

 

5.     Choosing not to save credit card information

One should choose not to save their credit card credentials on any website as there are chances of it getting hacked.

 

6.     Reporting

One should report any phishing text message they receive to designated authorities so that they can safeguard themselves and others from fraudulent SMS.

 

Similar to email phishing, SMS phishing or smishing is a crime of deception which can be used to extract a victim’s sensitive and confidential information. Staying mindful of such trickery and reporting the same can help to protect against such cyber attacks. Gajshield’s tools can help you safeguard your systems and applications from these attacks. Kindly contact us to know more about our data security solutions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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