Smishing Attacks and Social Engineering Red Flags To Watch For

Internet criminals are increasingly trying to circumvent your spam filters and are targeting users directly through their smartphones with smishing attacks

Short for “SMS Phishing,” these types of attacks often prey on victim’s sense of urgency or panic, pressuring the victim into giving out personal or company confidential information – often in the form of a warning from one’s bank about a potential fraudulent charge, but they can also appear to come from someone you might know – via text to your smart phone.  If you receive a text that seems out of place or gives you a “red flag” for one reason or another, always call and verify before letting go of ANY sensitive information!

Along with banking/accounting-related smishing attempts, there is a mystery shopping scam going on as well – starting out with a text invitation, asking you to send an email for more info which then gets you roped into the scam.Always, when you get a text, remember to think before you tap.

Increasingly, texts are being used for identity theft, bank account breaches and to pressure you into giving out personal or company confidential information. Here is a short video made by USA Today that shows how this works:


Someone who is trained to spot social engineering red flags would definitely think twice before falling for these kinds of scams. Be sure your employees are those “someones.”

Social Engineering Red Flags Guide from The Fulcrum Group
Security Tips for you – Avoid these social engineering red flags!

Click on the image of the red flags for a printable resource sheet you can use to be sure your staff is up to speed on helping keep your computer systems safe!