Cellusys and MetaCert use zero trust methodology to combat SMS phishing and fraud

Cellusys pioneers the use of zero trust security to help their 800 million mobile phone end users combat SMS phishing and fraud.

Cellusys has partnered with internet security firm MetaCert to provide an SMS security solution, using zero trust methodology to combat cyberattacks such as phishing, malware and financial fraud.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, SMS is being used by financial services companies and government institutions to contact people offering assistance and advice. Many mobile networks offer subscribers ineffective or no protection against fraudulent SMS messages.

Advanced SMS firewalls are able to block many large-scale smishing attempts, however none are able to detect every new threat.

According to a study by Google and the University of Florida, URLs used in targeted phishing scams like the one carried out on Twitter, only need to be active for 7 minutes for criminals to achieve their objective.

Mobile operators claim their ability to identify and block an attack “within 24 hours,” but Cellusys now provides a security system that works in real-time. With the new approach from Cellusys, every URL contained in an SMS message is checked against MetaCert’s threat intelligence system and links categorized as “dangerous” are immediately blocked.

Uniquely, “unknown URLs” are similarly assumed to be dangerous. Carriers can either redirect customers to a warning page, provide a strong warning SMS, or block access to URLs that are not verified.

This approach to web access reduces the risk of a phishing-led cyberattack by more than 98% because consumers are able to make better informed choices about who to trust whenever they open an SMS message.

“Giving subscribers this kind of visibility increases their loyalty to the network, and is a very different kind of smishing solution.” said Brendan Cleary, CEO Cellusys “Adding MetaCert’s technology to our portfolio has generated a great deal of interest from networks, as an enhancement to the anti-fraud capabilities of our SMS Firewall.”

The solution is currently in beta and expected to go live before the end of 2020. Live customer demos are available and being demonstrated across the world.

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