Google tries to smash smishing in Messages

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Google tries to smash smishing in Messages

Verified SMS rolling out in nine countries.

Google is seeking to address the growing problem of short messaging service (SMS) phishing or smishing, by allowing business senders to enroll in a verification service for texts.

Text messages are often used for out of band authentication, account alerts and appointments, but it can be difficult to for recipients to verify the identity of the senders.

Smishers can also use deceptive links in messages to trick customers to visit malicious sites that can compromise their devices and information on them.

Now businesses can enroll in Google's Verified SMS program, allowing them to add their logos to messages.

Messages will also show up with a verified sender badge, and provide link previews for users.

Verified SMS requires Google's Messages client for Android that supports the Rich Communications Services (RCS) standard.

Messages with verification don't have to go through Google's servers however.

Businesses in the United States, India, Mexico, Brazil, United Kingdom, France, Philippines, Spain and Canada will be the first to get Verified SMS, Google said.

Google did not reveal the cost of Verified SMS which is already being used by its Indian payments service, and three financial institutions worldwide as well as large flower delivery company and travel search engine Kayak.

Along with Verified SMS, Google said it had added spam detection for Messages, but only in the US market.

Spam detetion in Messages lets users block and report spammers and Google said it won't see or store the content of the texts.

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