Tips to avoid SMS Scams, and what to do if you think you have received a Scam SMS

Date published: 25th November 2022

If you have a mobile phone, you probably use it every day to text people you know. But have you ever received a text message from an unknown sender? This could be a scammer trying to steal your personal and financial information.

Scam SMSs can be deeply frustrating as they are received on devices that are an essential part of our lives. Scam SMSs, or “smishing” – SMS phishing – attacks, have increased significantly over the last couple of years where hackers leverage SMS messages to gain your sensitive user information.

We’ve alerted you to Common types of Scam SMS and How to Spot One. It is also important to us that you know how to protect yourself against scams as they are becoming more and more sophisticated. However, the goal to deceive you and cause you harm remains the same.


Scammers will try their best to prompt you to either to click on a link or respond to the message by pretending to have authority, convincing you there is limited time to respond or even threatening or offering you something of value or attraction to incite a response.

If you receive a message that has a sense of urgency and is causing you distress, do not pressure yourself to respond immediately – take some time to digest the content of the message and assess whether it is genuine or fraudulent. A common weapon that scammers exploit is fear and anxiety, so never feel pressured into make hasty decisions!


If you have received unexpected and unsolicited messages, here are some top tips help you avoid falling prey to Scam SMS!


  • Verify the Sender – do your own search in a web browser to confirm

    Keep in mind that legitimate and reputable companies, including government agencies will
    never ask for any personal, sensitive or financial information over a SMS.
  • Call the company to verify they sent the SMS

    If you have received a scam SMS spoofing a company, such as bank or some other well-known company (for example Amazon, Netflix, eBay etc), look up the customer service number of that company from its
    official website and call them directly. If they confirm that they have not sent the message, delete it.
  • Immediately delete the message
  • Change your online passwords if you suspect any of your logins have been compromised.
  • Block the number if you have verified it is fraudulent
  • Contact your bank if you have or suspect you have transferred money to the scammer.
  • Warn people you know about the scam – the more people know about it the less likely they will become the next victim
  • Report the scam SMS


  • Do not click on any hyperlinks contained in the SMS.
  • Do not call the sender or number contained in the SMS.
  • Do not reply to the text message
  • Do not provide any personal information, including your name, D.O.B, address, any ID information, or credit card information.
  • Do not forward the content of the SMS to your family or friends.


If you receive unexpected SMS message which you believe to be a scam, report it to Scamwatch using this online form.

You can also report the scam SMS to other appropriate agencies, such as:

For more information on where to get help if you suspect you are a victim of a scam SMS, visit the Scamwatch Get Help website.