If you have received a text message claiming to be from Netflix, and telling you that “We have a new policy in place, please visit and review today”, along with a link and, possibly, a random set of characters in parenthesis such as “(ybpldcjyop)”, it is definitely a scam, do NOT click on it! The text message may also appear to come from phone number 141-010-0001 or just 410100001, but even if it comes from another number, it is definitely a scam.
The URLs (links) that accompany these messages are clearly not Netflix links, but they may be cloaked in such a way that it’s difficult to tell. That is because the structure of the links looks something like this:
The scammers are counting on the fact (or hope) that on your tiny phone screen, you will only be able to see this much of it:
And that even if you see more of the link, you’ll be concerned enough about your Netflix account that you will ignore the red flags, and click on the link.
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The website cicegimbenim.com is actually the site for a flower shop in Ankara, Turkey, which suggests that either their site was hacked to include the scammer’s setup, or their DNS has been hacked to make that URL resolve to the scammer’s setup.
Other variations of the message reported by recipients include this:
|We know you're sick of ads on websites. But we still need to pay to keep the lights on for you. So instead of huge ads and video ads, we use smaller, plainer ads. Still, if you'd like to support the Internet Patrol but not the ads, please consider supporting us here:|
MSG:We have a new policy in place, please visit and review today: netflix-aqfrwgcafq.cicegimbenim[dot]com
Note the FRM and SUBJ lines. How the message appears on your smartphone will depend in part on what phone you have, and who your carrier is, but they will all have in common the text “We have a new policy in place, please visit and review today,” or something very similar.
So what should you do if you receive this message? Actually, it’s what you should not do, which is don’t click on it!
And if you can (depending on your phone and software) completely delete it.
Thanks to Internet Patrol reader Elise for providing these samples!
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