On Your Side Alert: Stopping spam text

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - If you have a cell phone, chances are you've received a spam text message. It's similar to those unwanted phishing emails we warn you about, where the sender tries to collect your personal information or makes false promises. There is something you can do to limit and in some cases, stop the annoying messages.

We live in the age of the text. For most of us, it's a major part of how we communicate. So, it shouldn't come as a surprise that like those annoying, Robo-calls or phishing emails, your cell phone is now the target of spam text messages. Jake Anthony with AT&T says don't feel powerless.

"You can stop it, block it, control it and prevent it," he told us.

Anthony says if you get one of those spam text messages, the first course of action is simple, all you have to do is send a reply text.

"Nine times out of 10, if you simply reply to that message with STOP, it will prevent future messages from coming in. That is probably the number one thing you can do first," Anthony explained.

He says you can also forward the text to 7726 or spam and your carrier can investigate.

"We can research that and legitimize it. If we find it to be an illegal spam message, it not only will be blocked from your future receipts but also, for our entire customer base," he said.

Consumers can also file a complaint with the Federal Communications Commission or The Federal Trade Commission. If you are wondering how your number ends up on these spam lists, most of the time, it starts on the Internet.

"One of the biggest practices you can do, be cautions with where you place your mobile number. This goes for when you are on the Internet, when you are out there surfing the web, when they ask you for your mobile number, be very selective," said Anthony.

Of course, you can also contact your provider, many of them offer services to help stop spam texts.

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