Cybersecurity Blog

Beware text messages promising returns from your mobile provider – 11/28/20


Just when I thought it was going to be a quiet week, this showed up on my phone.



Considering how much we pay for cellular service in Canada, this is a mighty enticing message.  I will admit it, I desperately wanted it to be true. I have two university students on my plan so you can just imagine what my monthly bill is. Having money returned to me by my blood sucking mobility provider is a dream. A message like that makes your whole day.

However, there is this little matter of the link…why does it have to have a link?  Crud.  Add to that the vagueness of the term mobility provider and you have a real life smishing attack.  I have to admit though,  I do love how they add the dreaded Data rates may apply in attempt to make it look official. That is rather clever of them.

I am not sure what is more annoying, the fact that I won’t be getting money back from my mobility provider or that the message interrupted my day. Okay I am going to be honest, it’s the money.  That is definitely more annoying.  For one brief moment I had hope.

Let’s take a closer look at how my hopes dissolved into wisps of despair. Firstly, if this was from my mobility provider, the actual name of the company would have been in the text. No organization is going to be coy about refunding you money. They are going to make sure you know who is blessing your day with a shower of funds. Second if they were issuing me a refund, they wouldn’t send me a text with a link. Unless I was closing out my account, they would just deduct the refund from my bill which is much more efficient and economical.

That said, I am an eternal optimist.  I decided to check my account to see if perhaps I had overpaid and the blood suckers were indeed returning funds. I used my mobility provider’s app on my phone to check my account. My assumptions were correct, the text was fake. Nuts.

This is a gentle reminder to never click on links in text messages unless you have asked for the link to be sent to you. Instead access accounts through apps or a bookmark on your computer to verify information. No matter how tempting it is, don’t click.


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