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PLDT and Smart Anti-Smishing Campaign Intensified!

PLDT and Smart Anti-Smishing

PLDT and Smart Communications, Inc. continues to crack down on malicious text messages by targeting fraudulent internet links that aim to defraud customers.

From June 10 to 28, 2022, PLDT and Smart’s Cybersecurity Operations Group (CSOG) have blocked more than a hundred URLs and domains tied to text scams bringing the total links blocked to 650 in the first half of 2022.

PLDT and Smart Anti-Smishing

‘Smishing’ or SMS phishing is a form of social engineering done through text messages that deceive customers into thinking that these messages were sent by banks, recruitment agencies, tour operators, and other companies. These messages contain links to websites that lure victims into revealing their personal information.

The CSOG team describes the Internet as having three layers. The first layer, sometimes known as the surface layer, consists of all publicly accessible websites. This represents around 10% of the Internet. Below it lies the deep web, which contains sites that are restricted to specific groups or require login credentials to access. Hidden within the deep web and constituting a small portion of it, the dark web is a hub of criminal activity. The dark web is not indexed by search engines and requires a specialized web browser to access. 90% of the internet is believed to be made up of the deep web and the dark web.

PLDT and Smart Anti-Smishing

“Apart from blocking malicious text messages and SIMs, PLDT and Smart are also clamping down on URLs or domains that are often linked to ‘smishing’ activities. This adds another layer of protection for our customers and prevents access to these sites that target their personal data,” said Angel Redoble, First Vice President and Chief Information Security Officer.

“Most phishing sites are tucked in the deep web. When cyber criminals have acquired the victim’s personal data, they use this to access the victim’s bank accounts or trade them in the dark web,” explained Redoble.

PLDT and Smart have been fortifying their cybersecurity infrastructure, investing nearly ₱3 billion in 2021, to safeguard the public against emerging cyber threats and vulnerabilities, including online fraud and other criminal activities.

The efforts of PLDT and Smart to detect and block malicious messages, including SIMs and websites tied to fraudulent activities, are fundamental to the PLDT Group’s much broader program to elevate the quality of customer experience by protecting them from threats and attacks.

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