Do these look familiar?
If you’ve done any of your holiday shopping online this season, there is yet another scam that you should be aware of. As text alerts have become part of the shipping and delivery notification process, scammers are looking to take advantage.
Text scamming, or smishing, is nothing new but our increased reliance on mobile devices has created an opportunity that bad actors won’t ignore. Add the huge increase in online shopping, the rush of the holidays plus our natural tendency to click links and it’s easy to understand how people can be victimized. Once clicked, the link will likely take you to a spoofed website in order to steal personal information and could also infect your device with dangerous malware.
Here are a few tips to avoid becoming a victim yourself:
- Keep track of what you’ve ordered and where from. Hang on to receipts and email confirmations from online purchases
- Be aware of what you’re signing up for. Read the fine print and carefully choose how you want to be contacted. You could be signing up for text alerts without realizing it.
- Don’t click that link. Go to the shipper’s official website to track your package
- Keep your personal information to yourself. Legitimate shippers should not be asking for your personal or financial info in exchange for the package.
- Spelling counts. Look for misspelled words or slightly altered web addresses (such as “fed-ex.com” or “upss.com”). These are indications of a scam and designed to deceive.
- Report suspected scams or fraud. Copy the smishing message and forward it to 7726 (SPAM) and report it to the Federal Trade Commission at ftc.gov/complaint.
A few moments of scrutiny can make a real difference in securing your devices and personal data, no matter the season.