Phishing attempts are becoming more and more advanced, with hackers and cybercriminals making their ploys so believable that even the most cautious are duped.
One of the latest schemes is sending an SMS text message to people’s phones posing as a bank or business in order to trick people into sharing their personal details. Amazon seems to be the latest corporate confection.
According to FTC data, one in five consumers from July 2021 to June 2022 who reported a scam involving hackers impersonating a company said the business used was Amazon.
How do hackers use SMS messages to steal data?
The premise is simple: hackers will send text messages to users pretending to be Amazon representatives asking for a variety of different things, including false reports of suspicious activity on the account or false information about shipping delays or arrivals packages
Hackers will often include a hyperlink in the message that will typically deploy some type of malware on the device that will trigger some type of virus.
Other times, the “representative” will ask for information such as your login and password or credit card information using false claims that something is wrong with the account, that the payment hasn’t gone through performed, or will even send a link to a fake one. delivery notification
Scammers often make their claims very specific, which can make them harder to spot at first glance.
What are some signs you are being scammed?
The FTC says legitimate companies like Amazon wouldn’t ask for your personal or account information via text message.
Links you didn’t expect or unexpected texts asking you to reveal any kind of personal information are also red flags.
Other common signs of a scam are being told you’ve won a free prize or gift card, low or no interest credit card offers, and being sent a fake bill and asking you to contact them if you do not authorize the purchase.
What can you do to avoid being scammed?
If you think you’re being scammed by someone pretending to be Amazon, there are a few things to check.
If the text message includes a link that says “Amazon” in the URL, note the placement of the word. For example, the link itself should have a word before the “Amazon” part of the link, such as “shop.Amazon.com” or “explore.Amazon.com”.
“We will never send email with links to an IP address (string of numbers), such as http://123.456.789.123/amazon.com/. If the link takes you to a site that is not a legitimate Amazon domain , then it’s likely phishing,” Amazon’s website says.
If the message asks you to update your payment information, go to Amazon.com and sign in to your account. If you’re not prompted to update your information there, it’s likely false.
Anything with spelling or grammatical errors is also possibly spam, as are order confirmations for items you didn’t order.
Amazon maintains that customers should not open any links or attachments if they have an inkling that something suspicious is going on.
Customers can also visit here to report any suspicious activity or phishing attempts.