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Introducing the Newest Fake App Scam

January 24, 2024

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The newest scam involving malicious apps is a doozy. A cybercriminal will contact you impersonating a law enforcement officer, claiming that your bank account may be involved in financial fraud. They then ask you to download a mobile app to help them investigate further. Once you download the app, the cybercriminal walks you through several steps that set this scam in motion.

First, they give you a case number and ask you to search for that number in the app. When you search for the number, you'll find official-looking documents with your name on them. These are fake legal documents intended to make this interaction feel more legitimate. Once they have your guard down, the app will ask you to select your bank from a list and enter your account number and other personal information.

However, the most clever part of this scam is what the app is doing in the background. When you first install the app, it accesses your device's setting to block all incoming calls and text messages. By doing this, your bank will be unable to contact you about unusual behavior on your account. This gives the cybercriminals plenty of time to steal your money and sensitive information before you know what happened.

No matter how sophisticated these scammers become, you can stay safe from scams like this by following these simple tips:

Only download apps from trusted publishers. Anyone can publish an app on official app stores or sites, including cybercriminals.

Be cautious of scare tactics intended to prey on your emotions. Cybercriminals want to catch you off guard and trick you into revealing sensitive information.

If you're contacted by someone claiming to be in a position of authority, like law enforcement, ask for confirmation of their identity. Real officials will understand your concerns and can provide information without requiring you to download an app.


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