Believe it or not, if at any time you have lost mobile coverage and you do not have mobile data, someone may be stealing money from your bank. And it’s not fictional at all. In fact, there are real cases in which people have seen, after being able to connect to the Internet via WiFi, how their bank account was being emptied by cybercriminals.
It is true that it does not happen every day, but this type of scam is possible thanks to the technique known as SIM swapping, which basically consists of fraudulently duplicating a SIM card. And, in this way, it is possible that hackers not only gain access to your bank account, but can also impersonate your identity with this duplicate.
Beware of SIM swapping
At first, this practice is a scam that is based on fraudulently duplicating the SIM card of a person’s mobile phone. To do this, the cybercriminal has had to get a series of data, such as ID, address, card number, etc.
Once the hacker has obtained this information, the truth is that it is as simple as contacting the operator to request a duplicate SIM. When you already have it, you can access your bank account using the verification SMS that arrive at the phone number. Therefore, when they already have it in their possession, they will be able to make purchases and thus spend all the money in your account until you realize that someone is using your credit card to buy.
In addition, when requesting a duplicate, the moment the cybercriminal activates it on a smartphone, ours will be instantly disabled. Hence, we are going to run out of mobile coverage and mobile data.
How can it be avoided?
As in other scam methods, there are a series of security practices that can be of great help to avoid suffering from this type of fraudulent technique with which they can duplicate a SIM card. Therefore, if you want to reduce the chances of SIM swapping, you better keep these things in mind:
- Be careful with SMS and emails so as not to fall victim to phishing or smishing, as hackers can steal personal data from us.
- Use two-step verification on all accounts that give you this option. There are applications like Google Authenticator or Authy that are very helpful.
- Do not open suspicious links of dubious origin on our devices.
- Keep all important devices and applications such as the banking app updated.
Use strong passwords.
- Do not write sensitive information, such as usernames and passwords, when connected to a public network.
In the event that you are a victim of this scam technique, you should contact your bank or cancel the credit card from the banking app. In addition, you will have to talk to your telephone company to cancel that duplicate that they have made fraudulently. And you must store all the evidence you have about what happened to report what happened to you to the Police or Civil Guard.