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Is your own number spam-texting you? You’re not alone

It is strange that customers are receiving spam texts linked back to their own phone numbers, but Verizon is aware of the situation and is working to fix it.

Smishing attack text message
Image: KnowTechie

If you’re one of the millions of Verizon wireless customers globally, you’ve likely received spam text messages. It’s common knowledge that owning smartphones subjects you to spam texts, which can be more of a nuisance than anything else. 

However, reports of a strange occurrence impacting Verizon customers are emerging. Some people claim they’re receiving spam texts from their own cell phone numbers.

How is this possible? These customers can’t be sending themselves spam, right?

A Strange Phenomenon: Receiving Spam Texts From Your Cell Number

According to a CBS News article, multiple Verizon customers reported that they received spam text messages appearing to trace back to their own number.

READ MORE: Yes, you are getting way more spam texts than before

Spam messages encouraged recipients to click on an obscure link or informed them of a “free gift” they received. Usually, the link was cryptic. It would be impossible for recipients to understand what would happen if they clicked on it. 

One customer even mentioned that the link led to a Russian state-operated live TV broadcast.

Verizon spam text on an iphone
Image: KnowTechie

Some Verizon customers took to the Reddit page “r/verizon” to describe their strange experiences receiving spam texts from their own phone numbers. 

One Reddit user explained that they couldn’t report the spam text directly to Verizon because it came from their phone. Others expressed that they couldn’t understand how Verizon still allows spam messages and calls to go through in 2022. 

In February, a Verizon press release stated that the company had blocked over 20 billion unwanted calls for its customers. The company claims to work diligently to prevent spam messages or robocalls from ever going through. 

Verizon: Working to Resolve the Spam-Texting Issue for Its Customers

Verizon logo on globe background
Image: KnowTechie

In an email sent to The Verge, Verizon spokesperson Rich Young confirmed that the company was aware of the spam-texting issue and working with law enforcement to identify and stop the source of this activity. 

Young states that Verizon believes bad actors with no ties to the organization are behind these spam text messages sent to customers. Still, the company has no indication that it originated from Russia.

Many companies and individuals are on high alert as cybersecurity attacks and other spam activities increase, especially since the pandemic began. 

For example, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) alerts consumers to potential tax scams where cybercriminals use email, texts, and social media platforms to trick victims into sending money.

If a tax company is legitimate, they won’t accept payments without helping you build a plan of action for tax relief first.

Staying Safe From Spam Texts

Screenshot of a tweet from alex lanstein
Image: Alex Lanstein

Verizon customers need to understand how to recognize fraudulent spam messages. Stay safe by:

  • Installing filters or call-blocking apps on your phone to block messages from any unknown or spam senders. 
  • Contact your wireless provider to ask about tools or services it offers to block spam calls or text messages.

It’s also important to recognize spam texts so you can file a report after receiving one.

These are common patterns scammers use to lure in their victims:

  • They offer a gift, solution to a problem, coupons, discounts, or low/no-interest credit cards.
  • They promise to pay off your student loans.
  • They say they’ve noticed suspicious activity on one of your accounts.
  • They claim there’s a problem with a payment method.
  • They send you a fake invoice demanding payment.
  • They claim to represent a government agency or large corporation.
  • They offer coronavirus-related services, like testing, free masks or treatment, or need data for contact-tracing purposes.

Scammers will use any necessary means to deceive you, whether the text asks for your Social Security number or bank account login credentials.

Never share any information with suspicious spam text messages, avoid clicking on fishy links and delete spam texts immediately. 

Avoid Verizon Spam Texts

Ios gmail app showing report spam option
Image: KnowTechie

It is strange that customers are receiving spam texts linked back to their own phone numbers, but Verizon is aware of the situation and is working to fix it.

Hopefully, these bad actors are caught and these spam messages will go away.

Have any thoughts on this? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Staff writer at ReHack Magazine with a passion for cybersecurity, AI, and all things tech. Offline, you'll find me cruising the neighborhood on my motorcycle or bingeing the latest true crime documentary.

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