Modern technology gives us many things.

Telstra reveals how scammers are trying to catch us off guard

Scammers are a shrewd bunch. New research from Telstra has shown cyber criminals are more likely to target Australians early in the morning and on weekends when we aren’t fully alert.

Cyber experts have observed these trends after looking at the millions of SMS messages that were blocked in 2022 and 2023.

Telstra found on average 11 per cent more scams on Fridays and Saturdays than any other day.

The day by day breakdown shows Tuesday and Thursday were the next most popular days with Sunday being the quietest day.

Scammers also target Australians between 1am and 4am which Telstra thinks is to try and take advantage when we’re not fully alert and awake.

Through the Telstra Cleaner Pipes initiative they have blocked an average of 11,000,000 scam SMSs every month – an increase of 69 per cent year on year.

“Scams work when we’re tired and distracted which means those messages that are sent in the early morning between 1am and 4am are a real risk to those of us who might be having a late night out or who reach for our phones before our coffee,” says Telstra’s cybersecurity expert Darren Pauli.

“So fight the urge to respond to messages when you’re not yet switched on if you see anything that’s unexpected or seem to be dodgy report it.

“A lot of those messages which were blocked included texts created using generative AI to make it sound more Australian and even using common slang phrases to try to trick us into thinking they originated from within our country.

“This shows that scammers are experimenting and they’re trying to catch us off guard so stay alert to all unexpected messages,” Pauli says.

“The best way that Australians can stay safe online is to remain vigilant and sceptical.”