Globe blocks SMS with clickable links to beat scammers


Posted at Sep 30 2022 09:08 AM | Updated as of Sep 30 2022 10:04 AM

MANILA - Globe Telecom on Friday said it has started blocking all messages with clickable link in a bid to ramp up security against SMS-linked scam.

The "unprecedented" measure will block the delivery of person-to-person text messages with clickable links coming from all networks, the Ayala-led telco said in a statement. 

"Before implementing this measure, what we were doing was blocking access to malicious links in text messages to help protect customers. This time around, we're blocking the actual message," said Globe Chief Information Security Officer Anton Bonifacio.

"If the SMS has a link of any kind, we are not going to deliver it, period. This is necessary to protect our customers,” he added.

SMS blocking will be in effect while the passage of the SIM Registration bill is pending.

Both the National Telecommunications Commission and the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas have ordered the blocking of URLs that lead to malicious sites as well as the inclusion of links in text messages.

Both houses of Congress have ratified the SIM Registration bill after ironing out some provisions. For example, the bill will exclude the word "card" to accommodate any future iteration of the SIM, Senator Grace Poe said.

It is expected to be transmitted to the Office of the President for approval. 

Telco officials, lawmakers and law enforcement agencies have said SIM registration is vital in putting an end to SMS scams since it would help them trace the source of the person-to-person messages.

After all SIMs are registered, it would allow the authorities to swiftly address concerns, the National Privacy Commission earlier said.

All the country's 3 major telcos have expressed support for the measure.


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