Better Business Bureau warns against answering scam text messages

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Officials at the Better Business Bureau serving Louisville, Southern Indiana and Western Ken-tucky are warning local consumers about text message scams. Con artists are impersonating banks, cell phone service providers and government agencies.

How the Scam Works

Scenario 1: You receive a text message that appears to be from a bank or financial institution. The message states your account has been compromised, and a link is provided to fix the issue. However, the link goes to a fake website where the scammer receives your log in information.

Scenario 2: You receive a text from your cell phone company. There is an issue with your account, and you need to call a provided number to have it fixed or your phone will be cut off. If you suspect an issue, call your phone company directly from the number on your bill; don’t use the number provided in the text.

Scenario 3: The text message says you owe money to the IRS and the police is going to arrest you if you don’t pay the outstanding debt. Remember, government agencies will not contact you through text message.

Tips to Avoid Falling for Scam Text Messages

Check the sender. Caller IDs can be spoofed with a legitimate company name. Local consumers have been receiving text messages from “banks” they don’t have accounts with.

Ignore and delete.
If you receive unsolicited instructions to confirm your phone number or are given an unknown link, just delete the message. If you respond, this lets the scammer know they have a real, active number.

Check your phone bill. Look over your phone bill every month for any unusual charges. If there is something suspicious, contact your service provider immediately.

For more consumer tips, visit bbb.org or call (800) 388-2222. n