A new wave of U.S. crypto community members has become victims of SIM swapping attacks over the past month. More than 50 victims have reportedly lost over USD 35 million to hackers in the San Francisco Bay area alone.
SIM swapping is not a new threat, as more than USD 50 million has been reported stolen from over 800 individuals since 2018, but a new wave of coordinated attacks targets U.S. cryptocurrency holders, especially those using “hot”, or online crypto-wallets.
SIM swapping (also known as SIM porting or SIM jacking) works the following way: thieves contact your telecom service provider and fake your identification to steal the phone number. Transferring your phone number is a casual request which helps whenever you upgrade your phone or switch carriers. However, SIM porting is done by an unauthorized source – the attacker who pretends to be you. Here is where the problems start to arise, especially if your phone number is connected to services that are pivotal to your online identities, like your recovery email account or cryptocurrency exchange account. Once scammers steal your phone number, they use it to either access your cryptocurrency account, reset your online wallet password or ask your friends for cryptocurrency payments.
Once the attackers have access to your account, they can lock you out with little recourse to claim them back while simultaneously draining your accounts.
SIM swapping attackers might get your phone number by using the following methods:
- The attacker bribes or blackmails a mobile store employee into helping them.
- The attacker could be a current/former mobile store employee who purposefully abuses his or her position to access the company’s customer data.
- Corrupt mobile company employee(s) trick their associates or colleagues at other departments into swapping your SIM card with a new one.
Don’t become a statistic. Every second 3 Americans become victims of cybercrimes, with cell phone hacking becoming more and more common.
Unfortunately, traditional cell phone companies are not doing much to protect you. But it is not all bad news, there is a cellular phone company named efani that has stepped up and made it more difficult for hackers.
How to protect yourself against SIM porting
It is relatively easy to protect your accounts against SIM jacking attacks. Here are the things you can do right away to minimize your chances of experiencing such an attack.
Replace your existing mobile service plan with a secure efani SAFE plan today, No Contract! efani is a secure mobile service with an encrypted SIM Card that secures your mobile account from potential SIM Swap vulnerabilities, your personal information, as well as $5M insurance coverage per individual in the event of loss as a result of a SIMSwap or SIM Hack (includes: Crypto, Banking, Brokerage & Other Losses)
The SAFE plan comes with a 100% money-back guarantee for 60-days
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