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09 Sep, 2021
Getting Discount Offers Through SMS, Be Aware!!!

"Grab a 40% Flat Discount on Top Brands this puja…
Click on the link https://www.dhgyfug/ejhfu/gufyu.com to avail the discount now."

Hey Folks, do you often receive SMSs like this? Aren't texts like this really tempting?

Think twice before clicking on the link provided in the text…

Though concepts like SMS Header are not at all new when it comes to blast advertisement. SMS Header is basically an advertisement SMS created by a brand or a company with a unique combination of six characters that represent the particular brand or company. These SMSs reach a number of people at a time and help in boosting up a marketing strategy for the brand.

Getting Discount Offers Through SMS, Be Aware!!!

SIM Header texts seem really attractive to the customers as it consists of various discount offers and proposals which is totally irresistible. As a result of which a consumer gets fascinated to utilize the offers as soon as possible. This is where the fallacy lies.

A small unaware step of the consumer could create a greater setback in the long run. As we know these text messages contain a server link where personal and background details are to be filled up before the discounts could be taken into use. Cases have been taken into notice that the fraudsters use this process of sms header in two (2) different ways. They are:

  1. Registration of shell companies using the co-working space: Shell Companies can be defined as inactive companies that get registered in shared workspaces to create fraudulent applications for receiving SIM Headers. These SIM Headers are then used to circulate phishing links among the customers.
  2. Being supposed Genuine Clients: Often fraudsters promote themselves as genuine clients to the companies to get access to SIM Headers. Text messages with fraud links that are used to collect databases of the consumers are then created and spread.

Using the links hackers can get access to the data for their future evil desires to get to dark web routes.

TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) here comes with a brilliant procedure to check and gain control over the industry of fraud SIM Headers. Mandatory header registration for any kind of transactional and promotional messages along with a facility to trace the header messages has been introduced.

The fraudulent texts can be traced from the website of TRAI with a few simple steps. They are as follows:

Step 1: Go to https://smsheader.trai.gov.in to generate an OTP through E-mail.

Getting Discount Offers Through SMS, Be Aware!!!

Step 2: The Header Information is to be entered then.

BH is stated as the BSNL network, considered as the exit network. This network was used to send SMS. H generally stands for Haryana. It is seen that there could sometimes be discrepancy in the data.

Also it should be noted that BH doesn’t mean that BSNL is providing facilities to send SMS. There could be other telecom operators as well. BSNL is just an exit network.

Getting Discount Offers Through SMS, Be Aware!!!

Precautions can definitely be taken against the trap of the phishing links. A bit of awareness and control could make a steep rise in the safety graph. Crafted links can be sent where if you click, you can end up paying money to the cyber criminals.

In few cases we have observed that clicking on links will take users to a website which drops malware to the laptop or mobile, hijacking the device. Any monetary transaction made through the compromised device can lead to money theft.

A couple of activities can be practised to be in continuous awareness, they are:

  1. Physical Verification of the companies to check the genuineness of the organization.
  2. Enquiry of the reason, as in why the company is allegedly sending sms for.
  3. Sharing of suspected keywords and the frequency of the messages with the telecom companies.
  4. Suspected phishing content should be informed and updated to apps like Truecaller.
  5. Information should be provided to TRAI-DOT in case of misuse of SMS Headers.

The festive season is knocking at our door hence, we need to be more alert about the clicks and providing of personal and background details in our everyday life. In this era of digitalization cyber security is the utmost important thing to be maintained certainly without fail in every step we consider.

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