(Graphic | Courtesy of Oregon FBI)
Have you gotten a text from your own cell number? Don’t fall for it, it’s a scam.
Scammers spoof the caller ID to look like they are texting you from your own number. It’s bound to get your attention and might even cause a panic. But don’t worry, it’s the same tired old scheme where they offer a gift, thank you for paying a bill or even say you’re late on a payment. They simply want you to click on their link and they’ve got you on the hook.
Clicking a link could expose you to scams, download malware or get your phone number added to lists that are then sold to other scammers. Your best defense is to ignore the text.
If you want to filter unwanted text messages or stop them before they reach you, the Federal Trade Commission has some suggestions.
- Check with your wireless provider to see if they have a filter and block message option, most major carriers do, some even have a special app to block spam calls.
- It may seem tedious, but when you accidentally answer and it is a spam call, take the time to block the number.
- Carriers use that info to flag spam numbers for everyone. When you hit block, it helps out other callers too.
- You can also report an unwanted text message to the Federal Trade Commission. Copy the message and forward it to 7726. 7726 is SPAM on your phone.
And as always, if you’ve been a victim of an online scam, you should report the incident to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at ic3.gov.
Note: Speaker is FBI Public Affairs Officer Shelley Lynch.