Cyber security expert warn of texting scams

Bogus text messages that begin with friendly greetings like “hi dear” and “hey handsome” are popping up on phones. 

The message continues by encouraging the recipient to “write me” and includes a file to download.

FOX 35 discovered some of the texts are coming from phone numbers that ring to the messaging app TextMe.
The company said in an email Friday: “Our security team is actively fighting spammers and is aware of a recent wave of spams.”

Cyber security expert Zohar Pihnasi found that the files that accompany the spam text messages contain pornography that could provide hackers an avenue for taking over your phone or tablet. 

"As soon as you click it you might be a victim of identity theft or your device, your phone might even be held hostage for ransom,” said Pinhasi, who leads a team of ethical hackers at his firm, Monster Cloud.

This time of year Pinhasi sees lots of spam disguised as holiday savings "saying, ‘Hey click here for 50 percent off.  You'd click it and…you're going to be a victim of identity theft, cybercrime you name it."

Pinhasi warns: don’t ever open text messages or emails if the source appears suspicious.

The Federal Trades Commission offers tips on how to stop text message spam here.