SMiShing: The latest scam to hit smart phones

10:56 AM, May 13, 2012   |    comments
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MINNEAPOLIS - It's called SmiShing and it's making the rounds as a text on smart phones in Minnesota.

SmiShing deals with the phishing of phones and sending out text messages.

WalMart and Best Buy are two of the latest companies that have been hit.

It works like this; you receive a text that reads you've won a gift card and to redeem it, all you have to do is click on the link in the text. According to the Better Business Bureau clicking is the last thing you want to do.

"They could just be looking for a working cell phone number, they could just be trying to get you to a website, trying to get you to enter your credit card numbers, your social security number," explained BBB's Dan Hendrickson. "Really it's anything that's going to draw you in and get you to reveal something about yourself you probably don't want these people to know."

As more and more people use smart phones companies can get your number in a variety of ways, the SmiShing scammers could also be randomly selecting smart phone numbers and if they hit yours, it could be just your luck.

"If you were walking down the street and somebody said hey you just won a thousand dollar Best Buy gift card you'd probably be a little suspicious," said Hendrickson.

Best Buy and WalMart are aware of the scam and like you, are unwilling participants.

The BBB offers these tips:

Do NOT reply to the text asking them to stop, even if the text instructs you to do so. This will confirm that your number is active.

Do NOT click on any links in the text message.

Contact your cell phone provider to block the phone number who sent you the text.

Report the spam text to GSMA, which recently introduced the Scam Reporting Service.

(Copyright 2012 by KARE. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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