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Major update as new top secret Irish tool STOPS millions of scam texts after shock €300m loss for thousands | #DatingScams | #LoveScams | #RomanceScans


MILLIONS of scam text messages have been prevented from landing in the inboxes of phone users in Ireland in recent months due to a new top secret tool developed by a new fraud tackling taskforce, the Irish Sun can reveal.

Irish mobile phones users have been plagued by fake texts and calls in recent years by con artists pretending to be officials from a range of services including An Post, eToll, Revenue, banks, the HSE and Revolut.

MILLIONS of scam text messages have been prevented from landing in the inboxes of phone users in Ireland in recent monthsCredit: Getty Images – Getty
A new top secret tool has been developed by a new fraud tackling taskforce, the Irish Sun can revealCredit: Getty Images – Getty

Figures from ComReg, the State body in charge of telecommunications, shows that these pesky scam calls and texts cost Irish society €300million a year.

Some €115million is lost by people, businesses and services to scam SMS texts while €187million is lost due to scam calls.

Research from ComReg shows that there were 365,000 cases of fraudulent scams reported last year.

This amounted to an avalanche of 89 million annoying messages and calls with 5,000 businesses alone falling victim to these con artists.

Last month, the Irish Sun revealed how grandmother Maura Murphy who owns her own businesses lost €5,500 after falling victim to a scam where fraudsters rang her and pretended to be from Revolut.

The Irish Sun can reveal that a new Nuisance Communications Industry Taskforce (or NCIT for short) has been created with officials from the country’s top phone providers along with ComReg.

Cyber security Minister Ossian Smyth told the Irish Sun that the NCIT taskforce has come up with a method that has blocked millions of scam text messages in recent months before they can reach Irish people’s phones.

The Green Party Minister told the Irish Sun: “A taskforce was created by the regulator and the phone companies to find ways to stem the tide of fake texts and phone calls.

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“As a result, a number of major changes were made to the networks that have resulted in millions of messages being stopped before they reach the public.

“We are not revealing the details of how these messages were spotted because we don’t want the scammers to know what we are doing.”

Alongside this secret scam texts weapon, ComReg has six other methods to crackdown on scammers, including a voice firewall, a Do Not Originate List, call blacking method and SMS Sender ID Protection Registry.

The Department of Communications told the Irish Sun that they believe the package of interventions from the new taskforce could be worth €1.5 billion in savings over the next seven years.

INCREASE IN ONLINE FRAUD

It comes after it was revealed that almost two-thirds of Irish people have spotted an increase in online fraud, according to research.

Shock statistics showed that nearly half of those surveyed had personally fallen victim to a scam – while 47 per cent said they knew someone else who had been duped.

Cons commonly came in the form of texts, phone calls or fake adverts on social media.

Meanwhile, only four per cent of respondents pointed to dating apps and websites as their main source of concern.

Read more on the Irish Sun

The study by online bank Revolut revealed that less than three in ten consumers in Ireland feel they know how to spot an internet racket.

The firm is now launching a course on its app packed with tips on dodging the most prevalent hoaxes, such as fraud; purchase, investment and impersonation scams; and account takeover cons.



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