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Your Next Spam Text Might Come From Your Own Number

Man holding phone showing a fake scam text message
panuwat phimpha/Shutterstock.com

Are you getting spam text messages sent from your own phone number? If so, you’re not alone. Confused smartphone owners are receiving spam text messages from themselves, especially lately, and you should never click links in the message.

Spam calls and texts are nothing new, and unfortunately, the problem doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon. However, we’re starting to see a new wave of messages that appear to come from our personal numbers, making the situation even more baffling and dangerous.

We see new reports all over Reddit, Apple’s support forums, Twitter, and more, with users reporting getting a similar spam text from “themselves.” The message essentially says your phone bill is paid, and it may say thank you, then includes a link to “a little gift for you” or to “redeem your free gift.”

While the text may seem legit, especially if it’s coming from Verizon, AT&T, or your own personal phone number, it is undoubtedly spam and avoid it. All major carriers in the United States suggest that owners forward spam messages in a text to the number “7726” which stands for SPAM. This helps carriers track and kill spam accounts, although that doesn’t work when the number comes from yourself.

Again, do not click the link in the text message or any fishy-looking link, for that matter. These could be a random free gift, an “update for tracking a package that recently shipped,” or anything else that doesn’t look legit.

I don’t click any links in a text message unless I know good and well who it came from and where it’s going. You shouldn’t either. These are phishing or “smishing” text scams trying to steal your identity, personal information, or bank details.

For those wondering, it’s incredibly easy for scammers to spoof a phone number. Of course, spammers have always “spoofed” legitimate numbers of businesses or banks to try and trick people, but using their own phone numbers kicks this up a notch. With this tactic, all the filters for unknown numbers and spam that carriers or phone brands offer miss them.

Unfortunately, there isn’t much we regular folks can do about it, but carriers certainly could do more. Just as The Verge concludes in its coverage of the situation, “carriers, do better.”

via 9to5Mac

Cory Gunther Cory Gunther
Cory Gunther has been writing about phones, Android, cars, and technology in general for over a decade. He's a staff writer for Review Geek covering roundups, EVs, and news. He's previously written for GottaBeMobile, SlashGear, AndroidCentral, and InputMag, and he's written over 9,000 articles. Read Full Bio »