Privacy issues while using Spoof text messages
A prank can be fun until it turns into harassment. If you'd like to protect yourself, it's time to do something and take some measures. Ghost testers and callers often act confidently and bravely, but we think it's time to punish them.
Oftentimes, online users get bombarded by anonymous spoofed text SMS, and it's real and really annoying. It might seem fun at first; however, when receiving up to 5 text SMS a day, you might get very irritated by it. But 500 text messages a week — no matter what time of day it is — is tantamount to real harassment of a sort or even a misdemeanor.
Being annoyed by a constant stream of SMS all night long from whoever, you probably want to do something about it, don't you? This article will tell you how to get rid of them because there are ways to bring them down.
First of all, you can call your mobile carrier. If you have found out that those spoof SMS originated from your friends and are written by entirely unknown people, you can contact your mobile carrier.
Spoof text phenomenon and its features
There must have been a drawback in the security system, and some perpetrators could have gotten access to your phone number or device. Time after time, cybercriminals tell people that their personal data have been compromised and demand a ransom. There can also be some suspicious phone calls that might say to you about winning a contest and getting it, and you need to pay some money.
But don't buy it; avoid sending emails. Again, you can call the mobile carrier right off the bat, and some organizations even advise reporting to the police immediately.
Some mobile carriers have dedicated departments in place that handle such spoof calls.
If you continuously get spoof messages or calls, the support teams of such companies could help you solve this problem. Find out whether your carrier has such a team that works to prevent unsolicited calls or text SMS.
Call the police. Some pranksters bombard people with their SMS immeasurably. If you consider that a joke has gone too far and looks like real harassment, then you'd better call the authorities. The specific police departments that investigate cybercrimes can track down those who are annoying you on a regular basis.
They have the needed devices and analytical software to find the traces of the perpetrators sending spoof SMS. However, first, you have to fill in the application to file a report as well as have evidence of the annoying SMS. Only then you'll be able to take measures. Otherwise, you might also contact a private detective if the matter is going out of hand.
Risk analysis and privacy issues related to spoofing text messages
There are ways to trace spoof text messages. First of all, you can screen your SMS. If you cannot afford police or some expensive private detective, just create screenshots of those spoof SMS.
Change your notification settings and set them all together, ignoring all the SMS, not from the people in the Contacts list. However, this is not always an option if you're waiting for a vital hit-up from some of your colleagues or clients who are not on your Contact list.
How to track down spoof messages? All the text SMS you receive are delivered via a short SMS service center. This is a wireless network dealing with all the SMS operations, such as routing, forwarding, etc.
These centers have a unique address that looks like a regular IP. Mobile carriers have to register their unique addresses to their country's regulators. In other words, government authorities can track all the inbound and outbound messages of their citizens.
Any text SMS sent can be traced back to the origin company that sent it, including spoof messages. Even though a perpetrator went the extra mile to hide their traces, that text SMS should be sent by an SMS in any way, which means that you can find out the company that registered the phone number and finds those who annoy you with their text SMS.
It would help if you always remembered that a spoof attack could be a case of mistaken identity. And the legal sending party might not be the person who sent you spoofs. The perpetrators in question can use a stolen credit card or mask their identity in any other way.
If those perpetrators have successfully hidden their identities, then tracking them down is not an option. Just block your number and use some other one.
The spoofed text messages using SMS are not an issue that was born lately. It has its roots in the previous decades or even centuries. Pranksters have always existed. Well, whatever sources this phenomenon may have, it has a destructive capability in its nature.
SMS spoofing is a sort of a method to deceive people via SMS services. This technique makes it possible even to change the sender's ID on a text. SMS is just known as text messages.
When a prankster sends a spoof message, they replace the original mobile number with an alphanumeric text. In simple words, when using text spoofing, you can change the sender's number.
Don't mistake spoofing with smishing. The latter is another technique, a sort of SMS phishing. This is a cyberattack when people download malicious software or a virus from a text message. The perpetrators who create spoofing messages make it look like it came from another device.
So, these techniques are pretty different. Often, these techniques are used in pairs to dupe people. For instance, a scammer may change the sender's name, write a bank name, and add a phishing text SMS that encourages people to click on a malicious link inside the transmission. So, they have something in common, but they are different.
As mentioned before, text spoofing makes it possible for criminals to send SMS impersonating some other entity. They change the sender's number or name. Sometimes they could change them both. And for them, it's not even hard to do.
There's a specific software in Darknet for some computer operating systems used for social engineering. By using this tool, people can send SMS using particular IDs. There are even online services offering text spoofing. In other words, companies specializing in this kind of thing. So, anyone on the internet can use such tools for spoofing, you need to pay, and it's not always expensive either. You can add the specific name you want to display and the people you want to receive your spoof SMS. This is used in digital marketing and by various fraudsters.
Probably anyone has received a text message saying it came from a reputable entity or some well-known company. However, in the end, that message turns out to be just a spoof. So, it was an SMS spoofing that you came across.
Online marketers and just fraudsters might take to this technology to send and receive spoof text messages that look like they came from some well-known organization. They do it by changing the sender's name to some famous mobile carrier who informs that a mobile contract is a subject of renewal. Most users will take such messages with a pinch of salt, but some unsuspecting people could believe it and transfer the criminals their money.
By the way, SMS messages have the highest open rate among all the digital channels. So, users are highly likely to open a spoof message. And that's the ultimate goal of fraudsters.
"Send me your money" messages
Offline shopping is one of the most popular techniques used by perpetrators. SMS spoofing is in offline shopping. In this way, some fraudsters can buy some things like electronic devices or high-end clothes. He could make several purchases, and for payment, he could ask for the bank details of the store in question. And then ask his victim to pay for that.
If fraudsters know the store outlet's phone numbers for receiving SMS from banks for updates, those people can get access to the SMS messages and spoof websites by sending fake SMS text messages.
Such SMS might look like they came from a bank with the account number of the store. As a result, it seems like a natural thing for people who get SMS messages, which, of course, it isn't. And some of them swallow the bait. SMS spoofing technology makes it possible to create a user's identity and impersonate other people for pranking or stalking.
Sensitive data extraction
Fraudulent SMS often provoke a sense of urgency, asking people to take immediate action. For instance, some users have received spoof text messages from a sender called himself an e-wallet service. He asked that an account be disabled within 24 hours, and all the money will be lost if the user doesn't send his docs.
There was a link in the SMS attached that the user should have clicked. After clicking, it directed the user to log in and give his personal information. And the link those fraudsters sent looked exactly like the website of the actual e-wallet company, which it actually wasn't.
When users log in and do not look at the URL in the SMS, they'll give their conmen credentials unassumingly. The thing is that beyond just innocent pranks, they could get all the money you have. And such cases are increasingly growing in numbers.
Legitimate user cases of spoofing
Nevertheless, there could be legal use cases for spoofing, like bulk messages. This is a Bulk SMS service that is used to send out text SMS through some computer networks. These marketing means need to spoof their numbers for people to identify them.
Messages of official organizations
Such entities as banks, social media websites, email services, mobile carriers, etc., send official text messages to their audiences. And they must do it visibly. While doing so, they need to swap their number for their company's name.
Protection of Identity
There are cases such as The United States Federal Witness Protection Program (WPP) when the sender's identity needs to be protected. There could be whistle-blowers who might need special protection. All the communications with them must be done privately.
Save yourself from spoof messages with virtual phone numbers of Onlinesim
Use a dummy number instead of your personal one when registering on various online services to protect yourself from cons. Onlinesim is a perfect solution to protect your privacy and does not allow third parties to access your personal data.
For example, if you need to register on some online service like Gmail or social media like Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, go to the Onlinesim website and select the online service needed. Then copy the given virtual phone number to the registration page on your service. Then you'll see a confirmation code in your account.
Today, data privacy is a critical component. Every user wants to keep personal information private so that it does not become available to the public. However, users themselves are unaware that they often share their data without even knowing it. Every site, application, or social networking platform requires an actual phone number during registration, and this is precious information.
Use to register; after that, you'll have your account registered on a given website. It's as simple as that. Onlinesim offers various unused numbers to choose from — an extensive pool of countries, namely over 10K virtual phone numbers of the mobile carriers from 30K+ countries.
Using this free phone service app or virtual phone number means you will need to share neither your phone number nor other data with online services - Facebook, Instagram, dating services like Tinder, or instant messaging tools like Telegram or Discord. Onlinesim is your privacy guard!