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Fulshear PD Warning Residents about “Smishing” Text Message Scams

(FULSHEAR) – The Fulshear Police Department is warning residents about text message scams known as “smishing.” In the digital world of cyber hacking, “phish,” is scamming tactic used to trick you into revealing confidential information about your bank account, credit card, or other personal accounts. These phishing attempts first started out as phone calls and emails, but now cybercriminals can also reach you via a text message through a popular phishing scam dubbed “smishing.”


“A general rule of thumb for a text from someone you don’t know is to just ignore it or delete it,” said Fulshear PD in a social media post. “Blocking the number is an option if you’re getting messages from the same source all the time, but the smarter criminals will rotate the numbers they come from.”


Common smishing scams include:


The Acquaintance


Smishing attempts try to use common names like Mike or Jane that aren’t too obvious or hard to pronounce because they want to maintain their not-so-suspicious facade.


Your package


Getting a text message saying that you have a package waiting for you might seem tempting, but think before you click on anything. Clicking on the link and inputting personal information potentially allows cybercriminals to steal your identity, empty your bank account, or install malware on your phone.


Your bank


Cyber hackers often disguise themselves as trusted institutions like your bank or utility company to sway you into giving up your password, PIN, or other personal credentials. It’s best to go directly to the company that is purporting to send you this scary message. It may require a call to your bank, but at least you’ll have confirmation from the source that your personal credentials are safe.


These are samples of the more popular “smishing” happening right now:


  • “Walmart” text scam

  • “Uber code” text scam

  • “Craigslist” text scam

  • “Bank of America” text scam

  • “FedEx” text scam

  • “PayPal” text scam

  • “Western Union” text scam

  • “Wells Fargo” text scam

  • “Someone complimented you” text scam

“If you don’t recognize the text, simply delete it. Also don’t forget, these types of messages (smishing) may also come through your social media accounts,” said FPD.


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