A viral phishing plan is targeting individuals throughout the country with scammy text messages claiming to be from the United States Postal Service (USPS). Now, QAnon conspiracy theorists have actually jumped into the fray, falsely declaring the plan is connected to human trafficking, as reported by Expert
There’s no proof to suggest this holds true. The report has spread out on Facebook and Instagram, echoing the Wayfair conspiracy theory that went viral earlier this summertime. Unlike the Wayfair conspiracy, however, the USPS misconception is obfuscating a genuine phishing danger.
The rip-off includes text messages that claim to know about a USPS delivery. To find out more, people need to click a link. On Twitter, security scientist Eric Ellason stated the link goes to the domain m9sxv.info, which then redirects to jtuzd.rdtk.io. He speculated the objective was to take individuals’ credentials, as reported by Gizmodo
On September 1st, an Instagram user with over 5,000 fans posted a screenshot of the text message, and stated that clicking the link would have given traffickers access to her area. “There is a new sex trafficking technique where you will get a text stating that there was a concern with a package that you have purchased,” she composed. “Whether the ‘problem’ is your packaged has actually been lost, harmed, etc. the message will send you to a link to ‘track your bundle’, and obviously once you open the link your location will begin to be instantly tracked.”
By then, the rumor had actually currently gone viral enough that Polaris, the non-profit behind the National Human Being Trafficking Hotline, had to put out a declaration. It said the company had gotten numerous reports about the USPS plan and its expected link to human trafficking.
” Handling a surge of issue over viral social media posts makes it far more challenging for the Trafficking Hotline to manage other reports in a timely manner and might result in wait times for people who have a minimal window of opportunity to connect securely,” Polaris wrote.
At a minute when USPS is dealing with an extremely real crisis in the kind of budget cuts from the Trump administration, a viral rumor about the agency being associated with human trafficking is the last thing the country requires. It saps assistance from a beleaguered company and makes it tough for those tasked with stopping human trafficking to do their tasks.
If there’s an intense spot on this bleak horizon, it’s that the report could stop people from clicking the link in the scammy text message. Inadvertently warding off a phishing fraud by spreading false information about human trafficking is extremely 2020, to state the least.