Arizona and the nation have seen an increase in complaints related to texting scams, according to the Arizona Attorney General’s Office.
“Fraudsters are relentless,” Attorney General Mark Brnovich said in a statement. “Text messaging schemes are now on the rise, and people are losing their money.”
The Federal Trade Commission recorded more than 378,000 complaints about text scams in 2021, up by more than 45,000 complaints from the prior year, according to the Attorney General’s Office.
Consumers lost at least $131 million to text scammers last year, the statement said. The median loss was $900 per person.
What does a text message scam look like?
It’s easy to make a texting scam seem legitimate, said Teresa Murray, the U.S. Public Interest Research Group’s consumer watchdog.
“The scammers will do anything to get a response,” Murray said.
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Text messaging scams can come in a variety of packages, but they all have the same goal: to get the recipient to respond with sensitive information. Text scam examples include:
Gift or prize offers: Swindlers impersonate well-known companies in a text that includes a link to a survey. They offer a gift card or cash upon survey completion.
Delivery deception: A text message asking for credit card confirmation will appear to be sent from a delivery service and ask