NTC ramps up drive vs smishing, text scams


September 10, 2022

The National Telecommunications Commission has directed all its regional directors and officers-in-charge, as well as the telecommunications companies, to ramp up their information campaign against proliferating text scams and smishing incidents.

In a memorandum order dated 8 September, the NTC directed its regional officers to “appear before different local radio and television stations within your respective jurisdictions at least 10 times to warn the public against the continuing text scams from 9 to 15 September.”

Likewise, it required them to further expand their respective local public information campaigns to educate the public about these scams.

In a separate order, the agency also asked telco providers to “accelerate the process of blocking SIM cards that are being utilized to perpetrate these fraudulent activities and to further expand the messaging reach of your respective public information campaigns to the public regarding these new variants of text scams.”

Pressure on

Thus, telco companies vowed to dig deeper into the proliferating issue of online scams that threaten to pose risks to their digitization efforts and endanger the personal data of their customers.

In a statement, Globe said it will clamp down on scammers accessing the personal data of mobile phone users in their ever-evolving modus operandi to dupe people out of their hard-earned money.

“At a time of aggressive cybercriminal activity amid growing digitalization, Globe asserts that the public, government, and industry players, including telcos, are all victims of these illegal acts. It is, thus, a shared fight among all of us to beat our common enemy, which is cybercrime,” said Anton Bonifacio, Globe Chief Information Security Officer.

Meanwhile, Smart Communications Inc. said it will continue to address recent text scams that have been plaguing the public.

Based on the investigation conducted by its Cyber Security Operations Group, the messages are being sent by individual SIMs and do not come from aggregators or their clients.

“There’s no recent cybersecurity incident that may have allowed criminals to breach our infrastructure and steal customer data to be targeted in their fraudulent activities,” said Angel Redoble, FVP and Chief Information Security Officer of PLDT and Smart.

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