Hackers have figured out a way to hijack cell phones and steal the valuable information. The criminal contacts the cell provider of the victim and requests a transfer of service from old phone to a new one. They provide the phone company with the last four digits of the victim’s social security number and a fake ID. If they don’t have the information, the culprits use a convincing line about losing or damaging the phone. They make it plausible by providing the address, birth date, and other information that is easily available on the internet. They also use your payment apps, email, and photos. When convinced, the phone company may port the number to a new device that the criminal now has complete control and disconnects the victim’s phone. Now the criminal can reset passwords on every account that uses the phone number for auto recovery. They can also steal money, blackmail the victim, and threaten them. The victim is unable to sign into their accounts.
Most mobile phone carriers are aware of these crimes and are suggesting customers use a pin number. Don’t click onto suspicious sites. Malware embedded in links can secretly download on your device. Don’t publish your phone number on a public profile or social media. Make your passwords long and complicated. Criminals are constantly finding ways to scam people. Be on alert.