Hello dear readers, we are fast approaching the end of the year and the start of the holiday season. Here is our latest monthly summary from the ever-evolving world of business messaging. We’ve distilled key developments so that you can spend more time on more pressing matters like snowball fights and festive decorations.
Smishing attacks see a sharp increase near Black Friday
Techradar reports that the number of smishing attacks grew nearly twofold compared to last year’s holiday shopping season. Cybercriminals were relentlessly preying on Black Friday and Cyber Monday shoppers, aiming to profit from the massive economic activity accompanying the holiday season.
While unsolicited email messages and advertising fraud were the most common tactics in the past, SMS has become more popular as a phishing vector due to its high open rates. Check our related article to find out the ways to stay protected from smishing.
The mobile banking boom presents new risks
The rapid rise in mobile-based financial services use caused by the COVID-19-related lockdowns and service limitations has led to an unprecedented surge in mobile fraud. The overall nervousness and the abundance of pandemic-related communications provide fraudsters with a perfect disguise for their malevolent activities. Indeed, for the first time ever, banks lost more to online scams than they did to card fraud in the first half of 2021, reports SC Media.
Protecting the consumers should be a joint effort between the mobile operators and banks. While MNOs can dramatically decrease the volumes of fraudulent messages by deploying and continuously updating modern firewall solutions, a multi-factor authentication introduced by a bank can bring user security to a brand new level.
Australian teens abandon Facebook and Instagram: opportunities for SMS
According to the Drum, Facebook’s second outage showed that retailers could not afford to rely solely on social media platforms as their primary marketing channel anymore. Due to a lower cost of acquisition than Facebook ads and fewer entry barriers compared to other channels, SMS may become particularly useful for retailers.
Brands need to shift their focus and rely less on casting far and wide to reach young customers and rather pay attention to conversions and repeat buyers. And using SMS for that purpose may help keep young Australians engaged.
Juniper Research: SMS firewall revenue to reach $4.1 billion globally by 2026, as messaging fraud evolves
A new Juniper Research study has found that total SMS firewall revenue will increase from $911 million in 2021 to $4.1 billion in 2026. That represents an absolute growth of 346%.
Besides, according to the Fraudulent SMS Activity whitepaper, business messaging traffic volume sifted by SMS firewalls will grow from 3.1 trillion in 2021 to 4.4 trillion in 2026, representing an absolute growth of 45%. Such rapid change will be the result of the operators increasing their investment in advanced analytics, for instance — natural language processing.
WhatsApp to begin warning people when they receive messages from businesses
WhatsApp is testing a new feature to warn people when they receive a message from a business, iMore reports. Any brand that is not already in the recipient’s contacts will trigger the warning. Thus, a customer may choose between two different options: block or save in their contact list.
As for now, there is no information on whether WhatsApp plans to introduce this feature for all users.