Smishing

AAA

DEFINITION of 'Smishing'

The use of SMS (short messaging services) technology to phish for individuals' sensitive personal information, such as Social Security numbers or user names and passwords for online banking. Smishing can also be used to infect users' phones and related networks with destructive viruses or eavesdropping software. Smishing, like phishing, is a criminal activity.

INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'Smishing'

Mobile phone users can implement the same precautions that they take against phishing attempts to protect themselves from smishing attempts. These include not clicking on URLs received in text messages, not calling phone numbers given in text messages or that appear in the caller ID field of suspicious text messages, and being wary of messages from unknown or unfamiliar sources. To find out if a text message that appears to be smishing is legitimate, users should contact their financial institutions directly using the phone number provided by the institution, not the number provided by the text message.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Identity Fraud Reimbursement Program

    A financial product that offers reimbursment for the costs associated ...
  2. Social Security Number - SSN

    A nine-digit number assigned to citizens, some temporary residents ...
  3. Account Number

    The primary identifier for ownership of an account, whether a ...
  4. Ponzi Scheme

    A fraudulent investing scam promising high rates of return with ...
  5. Pyramid Scheme

    An illegal investment scam based on a hierarchical setup. New ...
  6. Credit Watch

    A variety of special programs offered by credit rating agencies ...
RELATED FAQS
  1. What is a "phishing scam" and how can they be avoided?

    The term phishing (as in fishing for confidential information) refers to a scam that fraudulently obtains and uses an individual's ... Read Full Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Insurance

    Credit Scams To Watch Out For

    More than 30 million people were victims of fraud in 2007. Will you be next?
  2. Insurance

    Identity Theft: How To Avoid It

    Don't be a victim of this disturbing crime. Get insight into how perpetrators commit this form of fraud.
  3. Options & Futures

    Shopping Online: Convenience, Bargains And A Few Scams

    Shopping from the comfort of your couch has major benefits - and some unpleasant side effects.
  4. Personal Finance

    Tips For Keeping Your Financial Data Safe Online

    Find out how to protect your personal information from phishers, scammers and thieves.
  5. Credit & Loans

    Are You A Target For Identity Thieves?

    The Americans at highest risk for identity theft and identity fraud aren't the ones you most expect. See if you're on the high-risk list.
  6. Credit & Loans

    Avoid Becoming An Identity Thief's Next Victim

    Use these 7 techniques to keep yourself under the radar and out of the way of identity thieves.
  7. Personal Finance

    Consumer Protection Laws You Need To Know

    Knowing these which consumer protection law can help you in particular situations can save you time, money and stress.
  8. Insurance

    What You Need To Know About Insurance Fraud

    Insurance fraud is as old as commerce. Discover the types of life insurance fraud and how they affect you.
  9. Personal Finance

    Identity Theft Protection Services: Worth Having?

    A detailed review of what you get from American's leading identity theft protection agencies. Start here before deciding whether you need this coverage.
  10. Personal Finance

    Recognize And Avoid "Work At Home" Scams

    From pyramid schemes to envelope stuffing, there are a lot of scams masquerading as legitimate part-time work.

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Risk Averse

    A description of an investor who, when faced with two investments with a similar expected return (but different risks), will ...
  2. Fixed-Charge Coverage Ratio

    A ratio that indicates a firm's ability to satisfy fixed financing expenses, such as interest and leases. It is calculated ...
  3. Efficiency Ratio

    Ratios that are typically used to analyze how well a company uses its assets and liabilities internally. Efficiency Ratios ...
  4. Fixed Cost

    A cost that does not change with an increase or decrease in the amount of goods or services produced. Fixed costs are expenses ...
  5. Subsidy

    A benefit given by the government to groups or individuals usually in the form of a cash payment or tax reduction. The subsidy ...
  6. Sunk Cost

    A cost that has already been incurred and thus cannot be recovered. A sunk cost differs from other, future costs that a business ...
Trading Center