By special guest blogger Caitlin Watkins

Text message scams are crafted to get people to tell scam artists their personal information. To do so, they tempt you with offers and enticing rewards, but don’t be fooled by the promise of money and free vacations. Spam can slow your cell phone connection, add charges to your phone bill, and put you at risk for identity theft.

 

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is cracking down on text message scam by charging  twelve defendants under two groups of companies who are guilty of spamming consumers via text messages. They are required to pay a $2.5 million fine and banned from these deceptive practices completely.

 

These companies hired spammers to send millions of unsolicited text messages stating that the recipient had won free gift cards. When the link in the message is clicked, it brings the consumer to a website that asks for your personal information. Unfortunately, no one ever received the free gift cards, and instead, people were scammed into handing over personal confidential information which was then sold to third party vendors. We are glad that the FTC is stepping up to protect consumers personal information.

 

Here’s how to avoid those pesky text message scams yourself, according to the FTC:

Have you ever gotten a spammy scammy text message? Share your story with us here!