'Smishing' is the technique of using a cell phone text message or SMS to trick you into giving out your personal information or downloading a malicious software. The word 'Smishing' is derived from two words: SMS and Phishing. SMS stands for Short Message Service and is usually used to send text messages between cell phones. Phishing is a fraudulent e-mail message used by scammers to trick someone into visiting a malicious website for the sole purpose of stealing their personal information or downloading a malicious software.
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So, if you combine SMS and Phishing, you will get the word Smishing, with the 'S' and 'Ph' removed from SMS and Phishing respectively. You can say that Smishing is SMS Phishing.
Scammers are now targeting smartphone users because, Phishing scams targeting e-mails are often flagged as spam or junk and; it is difficult to filter a text message (moving it to the junk/spam folder).
If you have received text messages stating the following, please be cautious:
Also, Smishing messages may also contain a phone number instead of a website address. If you call the number in the message, you will be directed to an Automated or Interactive Voice Response System. This Automated or Interactive Voice Response System will ask you for your personal information like the systems used by other legit institutions like your bank, insurance company, health care provider etc.
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