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Christian Fischer

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Bring on the malicious SMS

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Telekom customers send suspicious e-mails to abuse@telekom.de for analysis. But what do you do with SMS that may have been sent with malicious intentions? 7-7-2-6.

Father and son look at the smartphone together.

7726 - Defusing SMS dangers together. © Deutsche Telekom

Since around 2020, a phenomenon that is already widespread in Asia has also increasingly appeared in Europe. Since then, phishing has increasingly been done not by e-mail, but by SMS text message. This is called smishing. The aim is to obtain as much sensitive information from users as possible. Or even the access data for the customer account, social media accounts or the e-mail account. These text messages generally contain a link. Anyone who clicks on this link is taken to a website where this information is requested.

Digital smartphone hygiene is important 

One variant uses the link to install malware on the smartphone. This can give third parties remote control over the device's functions. However, this could just as easily collect data of all kinds or use the smartphone to distribute malware to all contacts. A frightening number of customers treat such a situation lightly and do not react to warning signals. And yet such an "infected" smartphone can quickly become expensive - depending on the contract model. If, for example, the device secretly sends thousands of text messages, this can lead to rapidly increasing costs in individual cases.

I'm not falling for it

The tricky thing is that the perpetrator groups have often learned perfectly how to gain our trust. To do this, they imitate everyday processes and communication with well-known companies and brands. Then it sounds like company xy, looks like from company xy, but there are criminals behind. In case of doubt, you can simply forward such SMS to our experts for analysis. They will analyze such messages if they have been sent via the short code 7726.

7726! Just forward it? And then?

Well, an SMS arrives. The aim of the SMS is that we click on a link that has been sent along. Do not click, but forward the text message - to the experts at Deutsche Telekom AG at 7726. On the one hand, the aim is to be able to determine tendencies and trends. For example, because the SMS is part of a wave of smishing attacks that was previously unknown. Or the extent cannot yet be estimated.

On the other hand, the professionals can also see whether the embedded link leads to an already known target or a new one. If it is a new destination, we include it in a list. This helps us to protect our customers even better from the consequences of such SMS.          

  1. Tap on the desired SMS and hold your finger on it for a longer period of time.
  2. A small menu with the selection "Copy", "Save" and "More" opens.
  3. Tap on "More".
  4. A dialog window opens. At the bottom there are two icons, trash can and arrow.
  5. Tap on the arrow
  6. Select a recipient from the contact list or enter 7726.
  1. Tap on the SMS you want to send and hold your finger on it for a long time. 
  2. A selection menu with different icons opens:
    • The "arrow" is used to forward an SMS.
    • The "two superimposed pages" copy the content to the clipboard.
    • You can also see the "share icon", which can be used to pass an SMS to different apps.
  3. Tap the arrow to forward the SMS.
  4. Select "New message" and type 7726 as the destination.
Beware of treacherous short messages

Beware of treacherous short messages

Fraudulent texts often look as if they have come from a well-known company. How to stay safe from scammers’ tricks.

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