SMS firm allowed scammer to impersonate major companies – St George & Sutherland Shire Leader

A text messaging service allowed scammers to send messages impersonating well-known companies, the communications watchdog says.
An investigation by the Australian Communications and Media Authority found Burst SMS, which allows businesses to send bulk text messages, had breached anti-scam rules.
The company had offered clients a free trial to send 10 messages per day, without carrying out verification checks first.
The watchdog found scammers had sent 108 scam text messages in one month while impersonating reputable companies such as banks, telcos and rideshare services.
Under the current code, telcos need to obtain evidence from clients they have a legitimate reason to use text-based sender IDs when text messages are sent out.
The authority’s chair Nerida O’Loughlin said customers needed to be cautious if they receive text messages with links.
“Scammers will take advantage of any small crack in the system, and on this occasion they took the opportunity opened up by Burst’s free trial offer,” she said.
“Every text that contains a link should be treated with caution until you are sure it is legitimate. If there is any doubt then the best course of action is to report and delete the message.”
While Burst SMS has not been fined for breaking the anti-scam code, the company could face stronger penalties if further breaches are detected.
As part of the code, telecommunication companies are required to identify, trace and block suspected SMS scams.
Since the measures were enacted in July last year, more than 257 million scam texts have been blocked by telcos.
Australian Associated Press
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