New Report: The Top 5 Spam Text Messages in America

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If you’re like me, spam text messages have become a major annoyance in your life. According to one report, the problem has reached unprecedented levels.

RoboKiller.com, a spam and robocall blocking service, recently released Its 2021 Phone Scam Insights which show that Americans received 87.8 billion spam text messages last year. That is the most ever and a 58% increase compared to the previous year.

The report, based on data from the Federal Trade Commission, also shows what kinds of spam messages people are getting.

Can Spam Texts Be Dangerous?

Personally, I seem to get a lot more spam texts during political season and the holidays. But RoboKiller says we may all be seeing more spam texts, no matter the season, because crooks are now using that method more frequently to try to scam people.

And according to the report, many spam texts can be dangerous such as delivery-related spam texts, which try to get you to divulge your address or other personal information.

“Scammers send texts containing links to track packages or adjust user preferences — only they’re not as they appear,” the report says. “The messages are instead designed to get the recipient to divulge sensitive information or download malware onto their device.”

Here’s How Much Money Spam Texts Cost Americans Last Year

Americans lost more than $10 billion to spam texts in 2021, according to a RoboKiller estimate.

Here are some other key findings from the report:

  • Spam text messages surpassed spam calls by more than 15 billion last year (87.8 billion vs. 72.2 billion in 2020).
  • The most common ruse used by crooks was the delivery scam (26.3% of all texts), which involves criminals impersonating companies like Amazon, USPS and FedEx.
  • The #1 state for spam texts received per person was West Virginia (area code 515), followed by Idaho (area code 491) and New York (area code 483).

Let’s take a look at the top spam text message categories last year according to RoboKiller.

Here Are the Top Spam Text Categories for 2021

Top Spam Text TopicsEstimated Spam Texts in U.S.% of All Texts in U.S.
Delivery23,076,811,34326.3%
COVID-195,696,455,1126.5%
Bank3,071,087,7723.5%
Apple + Hardware Sweepstakes2,601,735,6123%
Health Care1,060,272,8391.2%

Read the full report: RoboKiller’s 2021 Phone Scam Insights.

What You Can Do About Spam Text Messages

Here are some tips.

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Receive a strange link in your text message? Don’t tap on it. If you do, it could ask you for your sensitive information or it could expose you to malware that infects your device.

Malware, short for “malicious software,” could be anything that can cause damage by infecting your device. It can take the form of content, executable code, scripts and more.

The best thing for you to do is delete the link.

Report the Sender

You can report spam text messages to your wireless provider and the Federal Communications Commission by forwarding the texts to 7726 (SPAM).

Block the Sender

  • For iPhone: Open your call log and tap the “i” (information) button next to the number you want to block. Scroll to the bottom of the screen and tap on “Block this Caller.”
  • For Android: Depending on the type of Android phone you have, settings may vary. For Samsung models (like my wife’s Galaxy), once you open the phone app, tap More > Settings > Block Numbers. Enter the number you want to block and tap “Add.”

Final Thoughts

Remember, never tap on any suspicious links. And whether the request comes through a text, email or phone call, never give any of your personal information to someone you don’t know.

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