We’ve been made aware of a scam text message purporting to be from mobile network Giffgaff. Here’s how to spot it.
A convincing fake SMS text message has been arriving in people’s inboxes lately, attempting to link them through to a scam website.
Fortunately Giffgaff’s security partners acted quickly in getting the fraudulent website ‘giffgaff-simrequest’ taken down, but it’s worth discussing what made this fake text especially dangerous.
Here’s exactly what the text looked like:
This is a slick scam attempt as it incorporates a number of clever tactics to make it appear genuine, such as:
⚠ Spoofing the sender’s number, so it appears in your inbox as from ‘giffgaff’
⚠ Well-written text, designed to appear friendly and on your side
⚠ A website URL that appears official
But the website was fake, and it’s highly likely it would have asked for personal information that could have led to your bank account being compromised.
Like other scams we’ve seen, this smishing text also attempts to panic the recipient into taking action. It asks that you ‘cancel immediately’ and only visit the link it has supplied; this should alert you that everything is not as it seems.
Keeping safe from fraud
We asked Giffgaff if it was aware of the scam and what action it takes to keep its customers secure. A spokesperson said:
Giffgaff takes the security of our members’ personal information extremely seriously and has a number of measures in place to combat fraudulent activity.
In this case, we would advise members that genuine links from giffgaff will only ever begin with giff.ly or giffgaff.com
and members can read more about how to spot the signs of malicious activity here.
For added protection, giffgaff has a two-step authorisation process in place. This involves a one-time passcode code verification for members requesting a SIM swap or wanting to change the email address linked to their accounts.
We urge our members to use unique and strong passwords across all their accounts and advise them to visit our online community forums at www.giffgaff.com for more information on how to protect their personal information.
If a member believes they have been affected by malicious activity they can also contact an agent here.
It also told us that it updated its members on increasing fraudulent activity last month, with advice available on its forums.
As ever, our advice is that you should always be wary of unsolicited texts, no matter how genuine they may appear. If you’re not 100% sure, get in contact with the company in question via its official channels only – do not respond to the SMS or tap through on any links.
If you think you may have given sensitive information to scammers, contact your bank and let it know what’s happened immediately.
Have you received this fake Giffgaff text or any others purporting to be from other companies? Let us know in the comments.