When I first started Scamicide more than ten years and more than 4,000 Scams of the day ago, I wondered if I would run out of scams and identity theft schemes to discuss, but I am totally convinced that unfortunately there is no end to scams and while many scams are tried and true scams that continue to be prevalent, there also are new scams and identity theft schemes constantly appearing.  This is the situation with today’s Scam of the day.  It involves scammers hacking into your phone and using it to access your apps.  I was prompted to write about this when someone told me about their phone number being used to access their CVS coupons.  The problem isn’t with CVS, however, the problem is with us.  CVS, like many companies have apps you can use to make your shopping experience easier and therein lies the problem.  Sophisticated scammers can access your phone remotely and then gain access to your apps to steal data and use your apps.

Regardless of whether you have an iPhone or an Android phone, your phone can be hacked and accessed remotely.  Like so many scams, one way they install the spyware to let them access your phone is by luring you to click on an infected link in a phishing or spear phishing email or text message.  In other instances the spyware is found in Trojan Horse apps that you download thinking they are a legitimate app, but not realizing the real purpose of the app is to get you to download the spyware that is a part of the otherwise innocuous appearing app.


Start off by checking your phone for apps.  Sometimes a spyware app may be downloaded on your phone about which you are unaware so go through your apps and delete any that you do not recognize or regularly use.  If you think that you may have had your phone hacked, start by checking your activity on all of your apps to see if there is activity that you did not personally

A cardinal rule for cybersecurity on all of your devices is to never click on a link or download an attachment  to an email or text message unless you have absolutely confirmed it is legitimate.  Also, it is a good practice to only download apps from the major app stores and while they cannot guarantee that there are no bogus apps, they do a pretty good job of screening the apps that they offer.

Finally, and most importantly, install good anti-virus software on your phone to prevent such spyware from being installed. Although both Androids and iPhones have some level of security built into their operating systems, it is not enough for truly safe phone use.  Here is a link to some good anti-virus apps for Android phones. https://www.tomsguide.com/best-picks/best-android-antivirus and here is a link to some good anti-virus apps for iPhones https://www.techradar.com/best/best-iphone-antivirus-app

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