What is a smishing scam? How to protect yourself.


Robotext scams are on the rise. A robotext scam is also known as a smishing scam. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Robocall Response Team recently issued a new alert warning that scammers are increasingly using text messages to target American consumers. You should be aware of these scams and know how to protect yourself against them.

What is a smishing scam?

A smishing scam involves receiving unsolicited and automated text messages that impersonate a familiar business, government agency, or financial institution. Often, these smishing scam texts will try to capitalize on your fear, saying you could lose money if you don’t respond.

Scammers send these texts to trick you into giving them your personal information. Other texts might install harmful malware on your phone to steal your personal or financial information without you realizing it. If a scammer gets a hold of your password, account number, or Social Security number, they can gain access to your email or bank accounts.

6 tips to protect yourself from a smishing scam.

1. Do not respond to suspicious text messages.

Instead, delete the message.

2. Never click on hyperlinks or attachments in suspect messages.

Clicking a bad link could install harmful malware on your phone.

3. Set your software to update automatically.

Updating your software and operating systems can help protect you from security threats.

4. Use multi-factor authentication to protect your accounts better.

This can offer an extra layer of security by requiring two or more credentials to sign in to your account.

5. Only share personal data through secure channels.

Do not share personal or financial information by text, email, or phone call.

6. Report any suspicious text messages.

You can report a smishing scam to the FCC, the FTC, the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, your mobile carrier, and any company whose name appears in the suspicious text.

Learn more about fraud prevention.

Following these tips can help better protect yourself from a smishing scam. You can find more guidance about online security and identity theft on our website.