TextOpener.com is a scam website that falsely claims it can spy on someone’s text messages simply by entering their phone number. The site tricks users into believing it can access private text conversations, when in reality it has no such capability.
This fraudulent website is designed to deceive victims into visiting affiliated spam and survey sites which earn commissions for the scam operators. TextOpener exploits the common desire to view other people’s texts, playing on human curiosity. However, it is completely fake and provides no actual service beyond generating traffic and potential victims.
In this comprehensive guide, we will uncover exactly how the TextOpener scam operates, including:
- A detailed overview explaining the various deceitful techniques used on the site
- A step-by-step walkthrough of the scam process
- Insight into how the site profits from its unethical tactics
- Guidance on what to do if you fall prey and submit personal information
By understanding the inner workings of this deceptive scheme, internet users can avoid being manipulated and protect their data. Awareness is key to not falling for online scams like TextOpener that offer services too good to be true.
This Article Contains:
Scam Overview: How TextOpener Exploits Users
TextOpener utilizes a variety of misleading and unscrupulous methods to dupe visitors, including:
Falsely Claiming To Access Text Messages
The site’s homepage states “Enter a phone number to spy on it’s text messages.” This promise is completely fabricated. TextOpener has no capability to view the private texts for a number submitted to their site. Their claim of being able to access text conversations for any phone is patently false.
Generating False Verification Steps
After entering a phone number, the site displays the provider and location for the number. This gives the illusion they possess special insight, when in fact this basic data is available publicly. The site then pretends to be “retrieving text messages” before prompting users to “verify you are human.” This is purely a tactic to send visitors to external sites.
Sending Visitors To Affiliate Websites
The “human verification” process redirects users to third-party offers and surveys, which qualify as spam. These affiliate sites generate revenue for TextOpener when users sign up or complete an offer. The scam ring profits from fabricating a service and exploiting human curiosity.
Bombarding With Spam Texts
In some cases, TextOpener may send recurrent spam messages to numbers entered on their site. This occurs if the number is flagged as “active” after being added to an SMS spam database. Users may receive unwanted texts sent by the scam operators or sold to third-parties.
The external sites users are redirected to often contain malware distributed by the scammers. Downloading files or entering sensitive information can lead to viruses, identity theft, and device compromise. Deceptive downloads are a common technique among scammer rings to infect victims’ machines.
Stealing Personal Information
TextOpener and its partner sites gather users’ personal data such as names, numbers, and email addresses. This information can be used for phishing scams, identity theft, and other cybercriminal activities. Users’ details are sold to shady third parties involved in the scam network.
As is evident from these methods, TextOpener relies on outright lies, redirection, spam texts, malware, and info theft to profit from unaware victims. Their false claims and unethical tactics highlight the fraudulent nature of their supposed “text spying” services. Avoid submitting any details to this deceitful site.
Step-By-Step: How The TextOpener Scam Actually Works
Now that we have exposed the misleading techniques involved with this scam, let’s break down step-by-step how a user interacts with the site and where things go wrong:
Step 1 – Visit TextOpener.com
The scam starts with an innocent web search leading to TextOpener.com. Their homepage claims “Spy on any phone simply by using number” next to an image of texts between two people. This immediately sets false expectations.
Step 2 – Enter A Phone Number
Tempted by the opportunity to apparently view someone’s texts, the user enters a 10-digit US phone number into the search box. The “Start Search” button leads to the next step.
Step 3 – See Basic Number Details
A loading icon appears while the site pretends to gather texts. After a few seconds, the phone number’s service provider and location display instead. This gives the impression special access was granted.
Step 4 – Prompted To “Verify You Are Human”
A notice then pops up stating “Due to increased spam we need to verify you are human before proceeding.” A large button says “Verify Me Now” and a timer creates urgency.
Step 5 – Redirected To Affiliate Offers
Clicking the verify button opens an external site offering free gift cards, personality tests, and similar content. To get their “reward”, users must sign up or complete a partner offer.
Step 6 – Personal Info Is Compromised
To finish an offer, personal details like names, email addresses, and physical addresses are collected. The data gets sold to third parties involved in the scam operation.
Step 7 – Potentially Bombarded With Spam
Active phone numbers get added to SMS spam lists. The user may subsequently receive a barrage of unwanted text messages from shady advertisers.
The Truth: No Text Messages Retrieved
At no point in the process does TextOpener access or display any actual text messages. The entire experience after the phone number submission is fabricated to generate affiliate traffic and leads. Users receive zero text visibility in return.
As demonstrated above, the site’s promises are completely empty and fabricated. Let’s examine why they go to such unscrupulous lengths to profit from false claims.
How The TextOpener Scam Profits From Deception
It is essential to follow the money and understand why scammers operate sites like TextOpener. Here are the major ways they generate revenue from their unethical schemes:
By driving traffic to third-party offers, the site owners earn affiliate commissions. Lead generation is their main objective, not providing any real services. Every person that signs up or completes an offer drives profits.
Selling User Data
Harvesting users’ names, numbers, emails and interests allows the scam ring to sell this data on the black market. Info like birthdates and physical addresses can also be resold for identity theft.
External sites the scam redirects to often initiate malware downloads. By infecting victims’ devices, hackers gain access to bank accounts, passwords, and other sensitive information that is financially valuable.
Building Spam Lists
Active phone numbers get added to SMS spam databases managed by the scammers. These lists generate money by selling number access to advertisers looking to send text blasts.
Driving Recurring Visits
If a user falls for the scam once, they may return in hopes of getting the non-existent text details they desire. The site benefits from tricking repeat victims.
Gaining Ad Revenue
The scam site also runs its own advertisements. By attracting vast amounts of traffic, this generates steady revenue from brands paying for impressions and clicks.
As you can see, TextOpener has multiple profit motives driving its deceptive claims and unethical redirection practices. All efforts focus exclusively on taking advantage of users, rather than providing any legitimate services.
Next, let’s explore what you should do if you unfortunately fell prey and submitted information to this scam.
What To Do If You Fall Victim To The TextOpener Scam
If you entered a phone number or other personal data into TextOpener.com, here are important next steps to take in response:
Step 1 – Scan Devices For Malware
Run anti-virus and malware tools to check for infection. The scam’s redirects may have initiated downloads on your machine. Remove anything suspicious found.
Step 2 – Change Online Passwords
Reset passwords for email accounts, financial logins, and other sensitive sites. If malware or spyware got access, it could be stealing passwords typed on your devices.
Step 3 – Monitor Financial Accounts
Watch closely for any fraudulent charges made to your bank, credit card, and online payment accounts. Report any suspicious transactions immediately.
Step 4 – Set Up Transaction Alerts
For an extra layer of monitoring, establish transaction alerts that notify you anytime money is withdrawn or spent from accounts. This lets you respond quicker to fraud.
Step 5 – Place Fraud Alerts
Contact credit reporting agencies to set fraud alerts on your name and SSN. This signals lenders to be extra diligent when any accounts or loans are opened in your name.
Step 6 – Freeze Credit Reports
Take the preventive action of freezing access to your credit reports. This blocks scammers from opening any new credit cards or accounts if they stole your info.
Step 7 – Block Numbers Sending Spam Texts
If you start receiving SMS spam on your phone, report and block the originating numbers. On iPhones, forward texts to 7726 to report to carriers for potential blocking.
Step 8 – Warn Contacts About Scam
Notify your friends and family to avoid the scam site if you shared the link or mentioned it to them previously. Prevent them from falling victim too.
Step 9 – Report Scam To Authorities
File detailed fraud reports with the FTC, FBI, BBB, and cybercrime units of your local law enforcement. The more claims submitted, the likelier action will be taken to shut down the scam.
Responding quickly and proactively is essential if you were deceived by this scam and entered personal data. Do not wait to take these precautions against potential identity theft and financial fraud.
Is Your Device Infected? Check for Malware
If your device is running slowly or acting suspicious, it may be infected with malware. Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Free is a great option for scanning your device and detecting potential malware or viruses. The free version can efficiently check for and remove many common infections.
Malwarebytes can run on Windows, Mac, and Android devices. Depending on which operating system is installed on the device you’re trying to run a Malwarebytes scan, please click on the tab below and follow the displayed steps.
Scan your computer with Malwarebytes for Windows to remove malware
Malwarebytes is one of the most popular and most used anti-malware software for Windows, and for good reasons. It is able to destroy many types of malware that other software tends to miss, without costing you absolutely nothing. When it comes to cleaning up an infected device, Malwarebytes has always been free and we recommend it as an essential tool in the fight against malware.
Download Malwarebytes for Windows.
You can download Malwarebytes by clicking the link below.MALWAREBYTES FOR WINDOWS DOWNLOAD LINK
(The above link will open a new page from where you can download Malwarebytes)
Double-click on the Malwarebytes setup file.
When Malwarebytes has finished downloading, double-click on the MBSetup file to install Malwarebytes on your computer. In most cases, downloaded files are saved to the Downloads folder.
You may be presented with a User Account Control pop-up asking if you want to allow Malwarebytes to make changes to your device. If this happens, you should click “Yes” to continue with the Malwarebytes installation.
Follow the on-screen prompts to install Malwarebytes.
When the Malwarebytes installation begins, you will see the Malwarebytes setup wizard which will guide you through the installation process. The Malwarebytes installer will first ask you what type of computer are you installing this program on, click either Personal Computer or Work Computer.
On the next screen, click “Install” to install Malwarebytes on your computer.
When your Malwarebytes installation completes, the program opens the Welcome to Malwarebytes screen.
Click on “Scan”.
Malwarebytes is now installed on your computer, to start a scan click on the “Scan” button. Malwarebytes will automatically update the antivirus database and start scanning your computer for malicious programs.
Wait for the Malwarebytes scan to complete.
Malwarebytes will now scan your computer for browser hijackers and other malicious programs. This process can take a few minutes, so we suggest you do something else and periodically check on the status of the scan to see when it is finished.
Click on “Quarantine”.
When the Malwarebytes scan is finished scanning it will show a screen that displays any malware, adware, or potentially unwanted programs that it has detected. To remove the adware and other malicious programs that Malwarebytes has found, click on the “Quarantine” button.
Malwarebytes will now remove all the malicious files and registry keys that it has found. To complete the malware removal process, Malwarebytes may ask you to restart your computer.
Your computer should now be free of trojans, adware, browser hijackers, and other malware.
If your current antivirus allowed this malicious program on your computer, you may want to consider purchasing Malwarebytes Premium to protect against these types of threats in the future.
If you are still having problems with your computer after completing these instructions, then please follow one of the steps:
Scan your computer with Malwarebytes for Mac to remove malware
Malwarebytes for Mac is an on-demand scanner that can destroy many types of malware that other software tends to miss without costing you absolutely anything. When it comes to cleaning up an infected device, Malwarebytes has always been free, and we recommend it as an essential tool in the fight against malware.
Download Malwarebytes for Mac.
You can download Malwarebytes for Mac by clicking the link below.MALWAREBYTES FOR MAC DOWNLOAD LINK
(The above link will open a new page from where you can download Malwarebytes for Mac)
Double-click on the Malwarebytes setup file.
When Malwarebytes has finished downloading, double-click on the setup file to install Malwarebytes on your computer. In most cases, downloaded files are saved to the Downloads folder.
Follow the on-screen prompts to install Malwarebytes.
When the Malwarebytes installation begins, you will see the Malwarebytes for Mac Installer which will guide you through the installation process. Click “Continue“, then keep following the prompts to continue with the installation process.
When your Malwarebytes installation completes, the program opens to the Welcome to Malwarebytes screen. Click the “Get started” button.
Select “Personal Computer” or “Work Computer”.
The Malwarebytes Welcome screen will first ask you what type of computer are you installing this program, click either Personal Computer or Work Computer.
Click on “Scan”.
To scan your computer with Malwarebytes, click on the “Scan” button. Malwarebytes for Mac will automatically update the antivirus database and start scanning your computer for malware.
Wait for the Malwarebytes scan to complete.
Malwarebytes will scan your computer for adware, browser hijackers, and other malicious programs. This process can take a few minutes, so we suggest you do something else and periodically check on the status of the scan to see when it is finished.
Click on “Quarantine”.
When the scan has been completed, you will be presented with a screen showing the malware infections that Malwarebytes has detected. To remove the malware that Malwarebytes has found, click on the “Quarantine” button.
Malwarebytes will now remove all the malicious files that it has found. To complete the malware removal process, Malwarebytes may ask you to restart your computer.
Your Mac should now be free of adware, browser hijackers, and other malware.
If your current antivirus allowed a malicious program on your computer, you might want to consider purchasing the full-featured version of Malwarebytes Anti-Malware to protect against these types of threats in the future.
If you are still experiencing problems while trying to remove a malicious program from your computer, please ask for help in our Mac Malware Removal Help & Support forum.
Scan your phone with Malwarebytes for Android to remove malware
Malwarebytes for Android automatically detects and removes dangerous threats like malware and ransomware so you don’t have to worry about your most-used device being compromised. Aggressive detection of adware and potentially unwanted programs keeps your Android phone or tablet running smooth.
Download Malwarebytes for Android.
You can download Malwarebytes for Android by clicking the link below.MALWAREBYTES FOR ANDROID DOWNLOAD LINK
(The above link will open a new page from where you can download Malwarebytes for Android)
Install Malwarebytes for Android on your phone.
In the Google Play Store, tap “Install” to install Malwarebytes for Android on your device.
When the installation process has finished, tap “Open” to begin using Malwarebytes for Android. You can also open Malwarebytes by tapping on its icon in your phone menu or home screen.
Follow the on-screen prompts to complete the setup process
When Malwarebytes will open, you will see the Malwarebytes Setup Wizard which will guide you through a series of permissions and other setup options.
This is the first of two screens that explain the difference between the Premium and Free versions. Swipe this screen to continue.
Tap on “Got it” to proceed to the next step.
Malwarebytes for Android will now ask for a set of permissions that are required to scan your device and protect it from malware. Tap on “Give permission” to continue.
Tap on “Allow” to permit Malwarebytes to access the files on your phone.
Update database and run a scan with Malwarebytes for Android
You will now be prompted to update the Malwarebytes database and run a full system scan.
Click on “Update database” to update the Malwarebytes for Android definitions to the latest version, then click on “Run full scan” to perform a system scan.
Wait for the Malwarebytes scan to complete.
Malwarebytes will now start scanning your phone for adware and other malicious apps. This process can take a few minutes, so we suggest you do something else and periodically check on the status of the scan to see when it is finished.
Click on “Remove Selected”.
When the scan has been completed, you will be presented with a screen showing the malware infections that Malwarebytes for Android has detected. To remove the malicious apps that Malwarebytes has found, tap on the “Remove Selected” button.
Restart your phone.
Malwarebytes for Android will now remove all the malicious apps that it has found. To complete the malware removal process, Malwarebytes may ask you to restart your device.
Your phone should now be free of adware, browser hijackers, and other malware.
If your current antivirus allowed a malicious app on your phone, you may want to consider purchasing the full-featured version of Malwarebytes to protect against these types of threats in the future.
If you are still having problems with your phone after completing these instructions, then please follow one of the steps:
- Restore your phone to factory settings by going to Settings > General management > Reset > Factory data reset.
- Ask for help in our Mobile Malware Removal Help & Support forum.
Frequently Asked Questions About the TextOpener Scam
What exactly is TextOpener.com?
TextOpener is a fraudulent website claiming to allow users to view anyone’s text messages simply by entering their phone number. However, the site has no actual capability to access private texts.
How does the TextOpener scam work?
The site tricks users by displaying basic public info about a number to imply special access. It then redirects victims to affiliate offers under the guise of “human verification” to profit. No real text visibility services are provided.
Is TextOpener legal?
No. The site engages in deceptive marketing, malware distribution, unauthorized data harvesting, SMS spamming and other illegal activities for financial gain.
Can TextOpener actually see my text messages?
Absolutely not. The site has no system to view anyone’s private messages. Its claims to read texts are completely fabricated. No real text access is possible.
Is it safe to use TextOpener?
No, the site is entirely unsafe given its use of malware and involvement in fraud. Users risk device infection, data theft, SMS spamming and identity theft. Avoid visiting the scam website.
What happens if I enter my number on TextOpener?
Your number will get shared with spammers and scammers, resulting in unwanted texts. You may also get redirected to sites containing malware or that steal your private information.
How can I tell if a website like TextOpener is a scam?
Warning signs include claims that are too good to be true, promises of free money, grammar/spelling errors, and links to sketchy third-party sites. Verify site legitimacy before entering info.
What should I do if I already entered my number on TextOpener?
Immediately change key passwords, scan devices for malware, monitor accounts closely for fraud, set up transaction alerts, and report the site to authorities.
How can I report this scam and help get the site shut down?
File detailed complaints with the FTC, FBI, BBB, and IC3. Contact cell providers to block any spam texts. The more claims filed, the better the chances of stopping the scam.
The Bottom Line: Steer Clear of TextOpener
In closing, TextOpener is a fraudulent website that falsely promises the capability to view anyone’s text messages simply by entering their phone number. However, it is merely a front to generate affiliate traffic, steal user data, spread malware and drive SMS spam.
No actual text visibility services are provided. Any number details displayed just utilize publicly available information. The scam profits by deceiving victims multiple ways through unethical redirection techniques.
To avoid being manipulated by this dishonest scheme, exercise caution online and avoid sites offering services that seem too good to be true. Never enter personal data unless certain a site is fully legitimate.
Heed this warning and spread awareness to help prevent others from becoming unsuspecting victims of the TextOpener scam. With vigilance and skepticism, internet users can protect their identities, devices and hard-earned money.