Stop Spam Texts Now

Imagine living without your mobile for just one day, how would this make you feel? Most people would reel in horror at the thought of being without their Apple or Android device, there’d be no social surfing or browsing the web, you couldn’t make calls, and you wouldn’t be able to receive texts.

Actually that’s not a bad thing. At least this way you wouldn’t be bombarded by spammy messages that seem to be the scourge of society right now. Nuisance calls and harassment texts are generally harmless, in the worst case scenario though, they target victims and can be used for fraudulent activity. 

As you might be aware, we have covered the subject of fake emails and calls in a previous blog from Focus Training. Due to the rise in text spamming cases though, we thought this topic is worthy of further attention.

Therefore, we explore the main areas of text fraud in this article, whilst also exploring suitable solutions you might want to use, to help you cope with spam in the future.

Text Spam in Greater Detail

Anybody that owns a mobile can become the victim of text spamming. The moment your phone is switched on it’s an open portal to the outside world, and anybody that has your telephone number can call you or send you a text.

Sadly marketing companies and the criminal fraternity use this to their advantage, they send advertising messages, premium rate messages, and you can also be the victim of a spam message attack, none of which, you actually want.        

Understanding a little about the three main types of text spam can be useful if you want to protect yourself during a spam attack. Here we break them down into bite-sized chunks, to give you focus and clarity on the subject.

Text spam falls into three categories:

·         Marketing Messages

·         Premium Rate Texts

·         Out-and-out Spam 

The average person could receive one or all three of these specific text types in any given day. If you are unlucky, you’ll get a mixture of them all, from a variety of sources.

Explore each area in more detail and this is a good way to protect your phone against text fraud, use knowledge to fight back against the fraudsters.

Marketing Messages

Most advertising messages sent to you via text are simply prospecting for business, there’s a good chance they are from a company you have given permission to contact you, or one of their affiliated services.  

It’s easy to give your consent for mobile marketing without realising it. You might have signed up for a service online and failed to tick or uncheck the authorisation box which permits businesses to contact you with offers or promotions in the future. A week or so later, you receive a text message to your phone.   

In this instance the business should clearly identify themselves in the main body of the text. The good news is if you have agreed to be contacted my mobile marketing by mistake, simply texting STOP should prevent any more contact from the company.

Do ensure this is a genuine marketing text from a reputable business before you take this action though.  And if that doesn’t work, visit the website in person to look for a section where you can opt out of any further marketing activity.

Premium Rate Texts

In this instance there’s a good chance you have signed up for a service without even realising it. This could be a game site, music site, chatline service or entertainment provider that charges you every time they send you a text.

Spotting premium rate text numbers early is critical. This will prevent you running up a mega monthly bill and ending contact with this type of service is simple.

Look for STOP prompts within the body of the text, this could be worded STOP ALL or something similar.  Hopefully this will sever all ties with the company.

Should the messages persist you can always contact your service provider to see if they can block the texts, or visit the PhonepayPLus website, they regulate UK Premium rate services and should be able to help.    

Spam Texts

Spamming texts are a major irritation. You have done nothing to warrant this personal invasion, they are sent en masse to a huge target demographic by a variety of sources, normally PPI claim companies, accident claim businesses, home grant companies and the like.

The best way to tackle these messages is not to react. Don’t respond to them, never click on any links they send you, don’t give the sender any indication your phone is active or they will hound you even more.

We understand they’re very annoying.  We also understand you don’t really want to waste time reading them. Unfortunately, you have received them, so deal with them in the most direct manner by hitting ‘delete’ then move on with your life.          

Ways to prevent spam texts and stop your mobile number from falling into the wrong hands include:

·         Being careful who you give it to

·         Not advertising it on social media

·         Ticking ‘opt out’ boxes for consent  

·         Taking a vigilant approach

At best spammy texts are a bit of an annoyance. Serious fraud can be committed though in extreme circumstances.

As one of the UK’s leading experts in fraud education and investigation solutions this worries us at Focus Training. Should you require expert help in any aspect of fraud, don’t hesitate to contact us.    

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