Viral Scam SMS Reaches East Texas Community

TYLER, Texas (KETK) — A viral scam message has reached the East Texas community. It’s a photo with a text that says “Thank you 4 for waking me up yesterday!” I hope it was worth missing this.

The Tyler Police Department recommends never opening an unknown message and, more importantly, never clicking on a link.

“Hackers have the ability to hold computers or cellphones for ransom,” said Andy Erbaugh, spokesman for TPD. “All they want is a call back or a click on the link. Any one of them and they got you.

Most investigations into these scams go unsolved.

“The problem is that most of these suspects come from other countries in Europe.” Erbaugh said. “In fact, almost all of them are from the Europe zone, which means that we cannot work on these cases, there is no way of knowing who does.”

Mechele Mills, president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau in East Texas, said scammers tend to adapt to your needs and emotions.

“What we’ve seen a lot lately is ‘hey thanks for paying your bill, here’s a reward for you clicking the link.’ Or “you just won a thousand dollar gift card, click the link”.

If you receive a message that you think might be a scam, you can forward it to 7726. They will then forward that number to the appropriate law enforcement agencies.

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