PLDT and its wireless unit Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart) have reported a decrease in the number of clicks by subscribers on unsolicited SMS that lead to fraud, following the Group’s massive awareness campaign against the scheme of dubious job offers.
As of December 4, PLDT and Smart’s threat intelligence, cybersecurity and cybercrime investigation units have already blocked more than 100,000 attempts to click or access domains directly related and involved in the ongoing SMS spam modus.
Upon examination, the teams have observed a lower count particularly on December 4 with 9,117 access blocked, a lot less than the number of blocked access in the previous days.
“Despite the sudden influx of spam messages, the decline in number of access blocked suggests that more Filipinos are now more aware and suspicious, and therefore do not click on the domains that are sent to them via these fraudulent SMS. More mobile users are now practicing vigilance in response to the emerging threats in cybersecurity,” said Angel T. Redoble, the Chief Information Security Officer of PLDT and Smart’s Cyber Security Operations Group.
“This also measures the progress of PLDT and Smart’s comprehensive awareness campaign to protect subscribers from unsolicited, fake job hiring content. By propagating advisories and safety tips on social media, the Group is helping more Filipinos make informed, proactive decisions to protect their sensitive information and manage data risks,” he added.
PLDT and Smart have also reinforced their collaboration with the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), and the National Privacy Commission (NPC) in stamping out text-based phishing scams and other types of cyber attacks.
At present, the government authorities are looking into policy intervention measures such as SIM card registration and National ID integration to address phishing attacks from unregistered individuals. In the meantime, PLDT and Smart strongly advise their subscribers to delete, block, and not click too-good-to-be-true job offers propagated by unknown senders, regardless of how enticing the compensation may sound.
As cybercriminals are constantly thinking of ways to beat the country’s cybersecurity defenses, PLDT and Smart are maintaining their operations 24/7 to respond strategically to these cyber attacks. By activating Indicators of Compromise (IOC) and other filtering systems, the Group is committed to safeguarding the personal data of its subscribers through end-to-end security.
To report suspicious and unsolicited text messages to PLDT and Smart’s Cybersecurity and Operations Group, mobile subscribers may send an email to email@example.com