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DTMB's Michigan Secure app helps protect Michiganders against mobile phishing attacks
October 19, 2021
Earlier this month, Gov. Whitmer proclaimed October as Cybersecurity Month in Michigan. DTMB's Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Protection team has been working diligently to provide tools for Michigan residents to help protect themselves from cyber threats in their day-to-day lives.
In February 2021, DTMB launched Michigan Secure, a free mobile application for Michigan residents that can detect threats to mobile devices and notify users before they can cause a problem. Now, Michigan Secure can protect against phishing attempts, making it an even more effective tool.
Phishing is one of the most common cyberattacks that online users experience. In this kind of scam, criminals attempt to access personal and financial accounts, infect computers and mobile devices with malware, or take other malicious actions by tricking people into giving up sensitive information.
While phishing is certainly not new, the attacks are becoming more sophisticated and deceiving all the time. Criminals are shifting their focus to mobile devices to take advantage of people's dependence on the technology. As a result, more than 40% of fraud occurs in mobile applications and phishing sites have multiplied nearly six times in the past year.
What can Michigan Secure do against phishing?
Consider this scenario: You and your family order items online to be shipped to your home from a reputable online retailer. You receive a text message from a delivery service saying they couldn't deliver a package and asking you to click a link to arrange another delivery time. How likely is it that you would click the link without a second thought?
Phishing attacks used to be obvious, but these days, scammers know they can trick people more easily when their messages seem authentic. That's why many phishing messages include logos and other recognizable formatting from well-known organizations. Phishing messages may also include supposed legal, financial, occupational, or health-related ramifications to scare you into acting without thinking. A scammer may customize messages to appear to come from a friend or colleague and contain personal references gleaned from social media.
Recovering from a successful phishing attack can take a great deal of time and effort, and compromised accounts are often used to target victims' family, friends, and even organizations where they work.
The award-winning Michigan Secure app also warns users of suspicious activity, such as a malicious apps or unsafe WiFi, and provides instruction on how to proceed with caution.
Michiganders that receive a link through a suspicious text message, social media post, or email, can use Michigan Secure to check the safety of a link before clicking on it. The app does all of this without collecting or transmitting personal information.
The Michigan Secure app is available to all Michigan residents to download and use for free, with no in-app purchases or ads. Downloads are available from the App Store for iOS devices or Google Play for Android devices and Chromebooks.
Don't get hooked. Stop mobile phishing before it starts by downloading the Michigan Secure app today. Learn more by visiting Michigan.gov/MichiganSecureApp.