Got a text about your 3rd vaccine dose? It’s a front for spreading malware

Updated 10/11/2021 – Tanglebot malware started spreading last month through fake text messages regarding COVID-19 regulations and vaccinations. Cybercriminals behind this tricky scheme are now sending bogus messages claiming you’re about to experience local power outages. If you click links found inside these messages, your device will be infected with Tanglebot malware. Keep reading for more details and how to avoid falling victim.

As if we didn’t have enough to worry about with the Delta variant of COVID-19, we also have to deal with crooks taking advantage of people during the pandemic. All sorts of scams are coming to light, from tried-and-true methods to new ones created just for these challenging times.

Crooks don’t always directly focus on COVID-19 itself. The Federal Trade Commission reported on a scam involving text messages that inform people their unemployment insurance benefits are running out. If there was ever a time for people to panic and make uninformed decisions, this is it. Tap or click here to check out the details of this phishing scam.

A new scam has surfaced involving text messages that address COVID-19. Bad actors are luring potential victims with phony messages about COVID regulations and third doses of the vaccine in hopes of getting them to download malware. Read on for details.

Phishing, smishing

A report from analysts at Cloudmark points to a new threat involving malware attacks launched via text messages. This particular scam combines SMS (short message service, or text messages) and phishing and is thus known as smishing.

Phishing attacks attempt to gain a victim’s trust by imitating brands and companies they know or support. In this case, the crooks are posing as an ambiguous official or government entity.

Messages claim to include COVID regulations and information on the third dose of vaccines. But the text is malicious and contains links that infect your device with malware.

If the malware infects your device, the crooks can steal data and take over your phone. This…