This campaign involves malicious SMS/iMessage texts that pretend to be on behalf of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs, targeting digital identity and payment data of UAE residents and foreigners living in or visiting the country.
Several victims interviewed by cybersecurity experts reported that they had never received messages of a similar nature before, but recently updated their residence visas. The perpetrators of this act may have access to a private channel where they obtained information about UAE residents and foreigners living in or visiting the country. This could be achieved through third-party data breaches, business email compromise (BEC), leaked databases purchased on the dark web, or other sources in Dark Web.
The gang employs URL-shortening services for sending malicious links targeting both iOS and Android users. This method, which conceals the sender’s identity, suggests the use of advanced techniques like Caller ID spoofing, broadening their victim pool and making detection challenging.
(SecurityAffairs – Smishing Triad, UAE Federal Authority)