New technologies made our lives easier, but unfortunately, they had side effects too. Fast and efficient communication gave scammers an opportunity to reach any person directly at any moment of our day. SMS text scam is as dangerous as email one, and it chases the same purpose — to steal your personal info and get you to send money to the scammers. 

To report SMS scam, you need first to detect it. Testelium is all for ecological marketing, so we prepared this article to guide you through the different types of harmful messages. By the way, if you are worried that your messages might be sent from scam-like addresses, check our text message sender identification to monitor the delivery.

Prizes and free offers

The messages which notify that you win a prize or received a free coupon are most likely untrue. It’s a classical trick in the scammer’s sleeve — the idea of a present looks very enticing, but the chance that there is a real free offer is close to null. 

You can receive a message with a link asking you to click on it and leave your personal info, like credit card credentials. It also can ask you to transfer a relatively small sum of money to get a bigger one. SMS lottery scam is possible too, so try to stop yourself before making an impulsive decision or clicking on the suspicious links from unknown senders. 

Urgent emergencies

Scammers may send you a text claiming that your family or relatives are in trouble — for example, they got arrested, and you need to bail them immediately. Such SMS scam is targeted to impact our biggest fears. They confuse us and block our logic, so we are in a hurry to get our folks out of the danger. 

You might be asked to send money immediately, but don’t buy it. The first thing you should do it’s to contact your relative and check on their situation — most probably they will be chilling at home, knowing nothing about their so-called emergency with police or hospital. You may also be persuaded that the person is kidnapped, and you need to provide a ransom. If you suspect that there is really something wrong, contact the authorities instead of following scammers’ demands.

Official requests

This category includes standard bank SMS scams and fake messages from different government agencies. You may be asked to share your passwords for online payment accounts (yes, PayPal SMS scam is also a thing), or to confirm your personal info. It’s phishing, fraudulent activity to obtain sensitive information.

Pay close attention to the sender ID, as scammers can disguise themselves, changing one or two letters in the name of your bank. And by the way, banks should never ask for your passwords and government agencies usually contact citizens through official mail.

Refunds

This type of fraud claims that you receive a refund for monthly subscriptions to popular services, like Netflix, Spotify, or Amazon. Scammers will ask for your account number, and as they secure the bank routing, your money will disappear. 

If you believe that this info might be true, better double-check it with official brand channels like websites or social media accounts. 

What to do with scam SMS messages?

If you received a scam message, don’t worry: they can’t access your info or bank account unless you are not careful and share it willingly with them. Here are also some tips on how to handle fraud SMS:

  • don’t send any messages in reply to the scammers, otherwise, they will know that your number is active, and they can keep spamming you;
  • don’t click on any links even just to check it — it can allow scammers to access your phone;
  • block the numbers you received scam messages and report them to your carrier;
  • never share any sensitive info through the SMS and check with companies and brands if you suspect something.

SMS scam might look obvious, but it can get to you in the most unexpected moment when your shields are down. Always stay alert, and you will be alright, while we would take care of checking your own SMS marketing campaigns with bulk SMS tests