The ultimate goal of productivity is to operate as effectively and efficiently as possible, so you live life on your terms. One way to maintain your productivity levels is to avoid cyber security implosions because having to deal with one of those situations will cost you a great deal of time and resources.
The latest cyber security threat is smishing. You might already be familiar with phishing, which is when you receive an email that asks you to click on a seemingly safe link but is actually malicious, or you’re requested to share private information with a seemingly legitimate company. You end up making a purchase you can’t get reimbursed for, or sharing information that leads to identity theft or the draining of bank accounts. Smishing is the texting version of this. We’re talking text scams.
Once per month, cyber security expert Bryce Austin of TCE Strategy shares cybersecurity updates. This is what he shared in July 2022 related to text scams:
“Here is how the scam works:
- Text messages are inherently insecure, and it’s easy to fake the number that a text message comes from.
- There have been lots of breaches of cell phone companies where personal data is stolen, and that means that it’s easy for a cybercriminal to know your cell phone number and the cell phone number of your company’s president.
- There are lots of applications called bots that scan LinkedIn for things like you starting a new job.
- It’s easy to find out who the president of a company is.
A bot notifies a cybercriminal that you have a new job, the cybercriminal looks up your cell number, who the head of your new company is, the cell number of the head of your new company, and the cybercriminal starts texting you.
There is a very simple way to avoid this type of scam: education. If the head of a company wants gift cards, they can buy them. Or, they can reach out to you in person to ask you to do it. Or, they could call you (but only if you are on a first-name basis with them). Never believe a text (or email) asking you to spend your own money on behalf of a company on a moment’s notice. Even if you have a company credit card, the same rules apply. I’ve never heard of a gift-card emergency before, so don’t believe anyone pretending to have an “urgent need” for gift cards.”
Be on the lookout for text scams. Stay cyber safe, my friends.
For details on how to manage your time in order to live life on your terms, check out The Inefficiency Assassin: Time Management Tactics for Working Smarter, Not Longer.