It’s already 2019, and yet, we’re still receiving various text scams here and there. Some people still fall for them, while others managed to distinguish which text is a fraud or not. It can be rather annoying, especially when it occurs daily. Here are some types of text scams that still infiltrate our inboxes today. We’ll also be giving tips on how to spot and avoid these kinds of traps.
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This type of scam revolves around a text claiming that you’ve won a prize, usually a cash prize in outrageous numbers. Sometimes it’s a car, or a travel package, or house and lot. The raffle text scam will often tell you that you need to call a certain number to claim your prize, and if you do call the number, the person on the other end will ask you to send money for them to process your prize. Other times, they’ll ask you to send them load first before you can claim your prize.
This scam begins off with a text that looks similar to the confirmation message of PasaLoad, Share-A-Load, Autoload Max, and the like, letting you know that you reloaded credits to your mobile number. Afterward, you’ll receive a text saying that they mistakenly entered their new prepaid credits to your number and then they’ll ask you to return it to them.
New Roaming Number
This one can be considered as one of the classic text scams out there. The scammer pretends to be a relative or family member of yours from abroad. They’re announcing that they have a new number and will ask if you received the package they sent months ago. To round it up, they’ll say they’re running out of load, so they’re urgently requesting that you load up credits to their number.
“I got into an accident” / “Ma/Pa, I need load”
Branching from the new roaming number scam, this one has the scammer pretending as a relative of yours who got into some accident and that they need load so they can call you up and inform you of what happened to them. The other version is them saying they’re your child and that they need you to send prepaid credits because they’re run out and they’re just borrowing someone else’s phone to text you.
How to avoid these text scams?
For some, it might be easy for them to recognize a text scam right off the bat, but for others, it doesn’t exactly dawn on them that fast. Here are a couple of tips on how to spot and avoid these scams.
- Usually, the grammar and sentence structure of these scam messages is wrong. The capitalization of words might be odd too. Check out the spelling of certain words, or if the sentences don’t make sense, it’s a scam.
- Messages from your telco providers are usually composed of three to four digits. If you receive a text from an 11-digit number and they imitate the automated messages from your provider, it’s most definitely a scam.
- If you receive a raffle scam, always try to remember whether you joined a contest or not. If you didn’t, then it’s most likely a scam. There’s no prize to win if you didn’t enter your number in a raffle anyway, right? Also, remember that contests will never require you to give them money or load just to claim your prize.
- Remember whether you subscribed to a service recently or not.
- If you’ve never reloaded recently, or if you’re on postpaid anyway, and receive a missent load text, ignore it. It’s a ploy to get you to spend money on a scammer.
- It’s highly likely that your overseas relatives wouldn’t text you their new roaming number nor ask you to send them load. Also, if they use a name that doesn’t belong to a relative of yours, then it’s a scam.
- If it’s a message telling you your relative got into an accident, always call your relative’s mobile number first. Check up on them just to be sure it isn’t them asking you to send money and credits for their supposed “accident.”
- The same goes if you have a child with their mobiles. Text or call them up first to verify if they need credits loaded up to their number.
- Ignore the messages and delete them right away instead of replying. Often times when we respond, it gives the scammers an idea that the number they’re texting is active and your number will likely end up in another scam ploy of some sort.
- Block or blacklist the numbers you get scam texts from so that you don’t hear from them ever again.
- Report the numbers of the text scams you received to the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), or to your respective telco providers. If all else fails, scam the scammer back.
We hope that these few tips were able to help you spot text scams. Stay safe, don’t get scammed!