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Wednesday 20 September 2017

O2 warns customers on 'you've won $2m' text scam

Pat Flynn

ONE of the country's largest mobile phone operators has once again warned customers about the dangers of responding to unsolicited text messages following a series of scams this year.

In the latest attempt to secure confidential information, customers have been receiving texts from a UK number telling them they have won $2m (€1.63m), requesting they send specific details.

In another 'smishing' scam, where fraudsters use text messages in an attempt to con people into handing over personal or financial information, customers have been receiving a text message telling them they have received flowers from a secret admirer and asking them to click on a web link. O2 has confirmed that the website has since been shut down and registered as a 'phishing' site.

'Phishing' is an attempt to trick customers into revealing private information by imitating websites. 'Smishing' is the practice of phishing using text messages.

Customers of O2 and Vodafone have been affected by the latest scams.

"As soon as O2 is made aware of smishing texts, we immediately seek to shut down access to the fraudulent websites," an O2 spokesman said.

"O2 will never ask customers by SMS to disclose personal information," he added.

Another scam earlier this year offered "unlimited free calls to any network" by going to a website. O2 managed to have that website taken down but not before thousands of customers received the text.

Irish Independent

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