Hallelujah! You just won truckloads of cash plus other exciting freebies, courtesy of a very shady or nonexistent foundation.
If you’re still unfamiliar with this modus, here’s how it works. Text Scams are deceitful messages blasted by criminals to thousands of cellphone users nationwide.
It starts with a congratulatory remark saying you’ve won a preposterous amount of cash. Most of the time, the flowery fraud includes real estate properties, vehicles, and expensive gadgets. It is then followed by phishing questions that aim to profile their victims.
Euphoric of their newfound wealth, people lose rationality and immediately give out their contact information.
Also, text scams use names of prominent individuals to get credibility. In the case of the actual sample above, they dragged the good name of Social Security System (SSS) Manager Chairman Amado D. Valdez.
Now, here’s a tiny problem. In order to claim your prize, you need to deposit a small amount of money. That’s where they get you.
This scam is no joke. A lot of people lost their money and valuable property over a false promise.
So to prevent falling to this modus, read and take note of these tips:
1. Analyze the message
See if the sender can only be identified through his cellular number. If the notice is legitimate, the company name that sent it should be seen. If it is not and is only some random number, it is no doubt a scam.
Also, take a moment to observe the grammar of the sender. Fake notices would have inappropriate capitalizations, wrongs spellings, and other grammatical errors.
The Philippine National Police warned against entertaining and replying to these deceptive messages. When you encounter these text scams, simply ignore them.
Refrain from asking questions that will start up a conversation. A lot of times, these scammers will leave you alone if you ignore their bait.
Naturally, if you did not participate in any sort of promotion or contest, then you should not be receiving any prize.
Here’s a solution against the more annoying type of text scammers. Blacklist their number in your cellular phones to rid your inbox of spam messages.
Better yet, block both text and call capabilities so they wouldn’t be able to reach and pester you. They can text till kingdom come and still get no reply.
Help others by going the extra mile of reporting these criminals. Network providers have their own online complaint desk for reporting text scammers.
From 2015 to present, a telecommunication company has disconnected more than 30,000 prepaid numbers linked to text scamming. Contribute to that number and report future criminals.
5. Warn Others
Do not forget this last one. Tell your parents, kids, loved ones, and friends so they’ll be informed of this modus as well.