Fraudsters who have hijacked Hydro-Québec’s name monitor messages for the slightest chance of dipping into your bank account, like those extorting money via text message from power outages.
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“The fraudsters are well organized. They don’t specifically target Hydro, but money-related messages and any event that touches emotional chords,” explains a consultant at a major computer security firm, an SMS expert, who wishes to remain anonymous.
Over the past few days, many citizens have reported receiving financial compensation by a government agency through text message (SMS).
The content of the short text message may vary from person to person, but always ends with a hyperlink that people are invited to click on to receive their compensation.
Of course it’s a scam. By clicking on the link, you may get into trouble and compromise your personal information.
Frédéric Langis received said text message, but didn’t take the bait.
“I immediately saw that it was a scam, and I never thought to click on the link. But I said to myself: to take advantage of this situation, you really have to be less likely to take advantage of vulnerable people after a crisis,” he said.
Working in financial services, Frederick has had his share of fraud and identity theft training. “We get a lot of these text messages. Fortunately we know the matter,” he said.
What happens when we click?
Usually, if you click on this type of scam link, you will see nothing but fire.
“It takes you to a false portal. It’s great, you see all the banks’ logos, the consultant explains that if you click on yours, they’ll ask for your contact details. The problem is, from the start, you’re on a server owned by fraudsters. »
“They can mimic bank portals — it’s very easy for a web developer to do that — but you’re still on their server. They’re waiting to get your information,” he says.
Not just hydro actually
“This type of phishing attempt happens frequently, almost every week,” says Caroline des Rosiers of Hydro-Québec.
“This is in no way related to the hacking attempt that targeted us a few days ago,” he says. Such fraud attempts are frequent and target customers of many companies, not just Hydro-Québec.
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