Fake Text Message Scams In Chicago

Fake Text Message Scams In Chicago

If you operate a Chicago area business, you’ll want to maintain awareness of fake text message scams circulating at the moment. These scams revolve around a perpetrator contacting you or another company representative, pretending to be your bank.

Safeguarding your business’s financial information is of utmost importance. Text message scams aim to steal your data. By complying with these scammers, you can make it much easier for them to access your information and disrupt your business continuity. Knowing how to spot these scams and avoid their pitfalls is critical.

Let’s dive deeper into what these fake text message scams involve, what you should do if one is attempted on you, and why constant vigilance is necessary. Following our lead can prevent fake text message scams from securing your business better.


The Typical Scenario for a Text Message Scam

If you’ve never been on the receiving end of a text message scam, consider yourself lucky. They’re becoming increasingly common; worse yet, they aren’t likely to ever go away. Rather than figuring out how to eliminate them – as you won’t be able to – you’ll want to learn how to pinpoint and respond to them.

The scam will start with you likely receiving a text message from someone claiming to represent your bank. The scammer may be claiming to reach out on behalf of your actual bank or from another banking institution you’re not affiliated with. If it’s a bank you don’t have an active account with, it may be easier to spot the deception.

The scam text message may involve any number of characteristics to make it look authentic. It may come from the same area code as your bank. It may have the same language that your bank typically uses when contacting you.

The scammer may request a transfer of funds. They’ll often depict it as advantageous to you – depositing funds into your account after you’ve provided your account information. They may also ask you to provide personally identifiable information that will help them gain access to your account.

The likelihood that your bank would reach out to you via text message is very small. If you comply with the scam text’s instructions, it is becoming more and more difficult for your actual bank to detect the fraud as fraud tactics are becoming more sophisticated. The scammer may be able to deplete your funds or access your account, and it can take quite some time before your bank catches on. That’s why it’s your responsibility as a business to monitor your bank accounts for suspicious transactions continually.

What Kinds of Chicago Businesses May Fall Prey to Text Message Scams?

You may feel your business’s size or industry decreases the chances you’ll fall prey to a texting scam. Perhaps you’re a small business or work in a non-IT-related field. More significant organizations sometimes seem to be more worthwhile targets for hackers.

Resist the urge to think this way, however. The truth is that businesses of any size, scope, or sector are susceptible to text scams. Scammers will try to infiltrate any business they can. No aspect of your organization precludes you from the possibility of an attack on your finances.

For Chicago businesses, you’ll want to be proactive in informing your team members about the risks of these scams. Show them how these scams might appear and how easy it is for anyone to become a victim. Teach them to question any bank-related notifications they might receive, promoting a cautious approach. If they know not to comply with the instructions of a potential scammer, they’ll be less likely to expose the company to a data breach or attack.

What To Do If You Receive a Scam Text

Step one is making your employees aware of the potential to receive scam texts. Be thorough in disseminating information on these scams, the type of language the text may use, and the appropriate methods for connecting with your bank’s representatives. Authentication and verification should be your default posture when communicating with your bank.

After you’ve educated them on the existence of these scams and prompted them to pause and question any bank-related interaction, you can move toward showing them how to respond when they do receive a scam text. Here’s what they can do:

  • The message may involve instructions (i.e., “Press 1 to [x]”). It may involve a link. Emphasize to your employees that if they receive a message claiming to be from their bank, they should not comply with any instructions contained within the message. This is good practice for emails as well – never click suspicious links until you’ve verified the sender is legitimate and was intentional in sending the message. It could be a malware or ransomware attack.
  • Reach out to your bank through officially established channels. You can contact your bank in person or call them over the phone. If the suspicious text contains a number do not rely on it. Go to your bank’s official website for contact information or instructions.
  • Ask your bank to confirm that the message is not legitimate. They likely will – they’ll know if another representative reached out to you, so they can tell you if the text is a scam.
  • Delete the text and block the scam number, but not before you take a screenshot. Use this as an opportunity to educate your employees.

These steps will help you build a culture of education, security, and awareness around text scams.

Where Should You Turn for Help Dealing with Scam Texts?

To some, scam texts can feel obvious and annoying. But those who lack awareness can be much worse than mere annoyances. They have the potential to significantly compromise your business’s finances, turning over sensitive financial information.

That’s why you’ll want to partner with a trusted IT services provider who can help you navigate not just text scams but fraud attempts of many kinds. By partnering with CEU Technologies, you can give yourselves an advantage over your adversaries. You’ll partner with a team that offers education and preventative resources to keep text scams from impacting your bottom line.

Contact us today for more on how CEU Technologies can help your Chicago business strengthen its cybersecurity posture and avoid text scams.

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