Followup Friday: DMV, smishing and more

(AP File Photo/Richard Drew)


RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — What’s the deal with some of the consumer stories we told you about in the last few weeks? Some of them need updates.

Last month CBS North Carolina told you about smishing schemes.

Smishing combines the phrases “SMS text messaging” and “cyber phishing” to create a new word.

Smishing is described as another way where cyber criminals can grab personal information from you by sending a text. They hope the more instantaneous nature of a text will get you to respond without thinking and give away some valuable data.

Now there is a variation on that smishing scam involving owners of the iPhone.

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If you’re using the Safari browser on Iphone you might get a pop-up override text saying your system is heavily damaged by four harmful viruses and the corruption will spread to your SIM card, damaging your contacts and files.

Several internet security sites warn that popup is just another smishing scam trying to get you to reveal personal info.

Don’t reply. Instead, quit Safari, go into Safari settings, delete your cookies and clear history and cache. That should get rid of it.

Last month, CBS North Carolina also told you about misleading signs on boxes outside state DMV buildings which could get you a $50 fine if you drop active license plates into them.

The sign on the box says customers may return plates there or inside the building during normal business hours.

But, the sign is confusing because only expired plates should go in the box.

“If your tag has not expired, for insurance purposes, it’s best to bring it inside and get an insurance receipt,” said DMV spokesman John Brockwell.

After we brought this to the DMV’s attention, the state agreed to replace the misleading signs.

“The signs are in production now and will be replaced once production is complete,” Brockwell said.

CBS North Carolina will let you know when that happens.

Following a story about email scams, a viewer brought an official looking email purporting to be from Bank of America to our an attention.

The email says it’s about a “new protection step” for internet security, and it asks you to click a link to update your information.

CBS North Carolina called Bank of America, and their fraud people told us that’s not how they make contact with customers.

They said it’s nothing more than another phishing expedition to steal your ID and empty your bank account.

Email CBS North Carolina’s Steve Sbraccia if you have a consumer issue.

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