14/03/2017 10:53 GMT | Updated 14/03/2017 10:56 GMT

People Are Getting Weird Texts From 2003 And Now We Know Why

We've got some bad news, it's NOT time travel.

A number of users have turned to sites like Reddit and Twitter to share a strange phenomenon that has been taking place where they receive text messages from 2003.

These ‘time travelling’ messages are always blank, occur just once and were apparently sent 14 years ago, which of course, is impossible.

As you can imagine, the text messages have been causing a fair amount of confusion with some users claiming that it could be nothing more than a bug while others believe it signifies something more malicious. 

The bug has prompted a number of responses from people claiming to know what has caused it.

It looks to be one of two culprits being either an iMessage glitch (you’ll notice it’s only happening to iPhones) or hackers are exploiting a loophole in the way that phones send and receive text messages.

We’ve reached out to EE for confirmation of this issue but for now that just leaves one other explanation: hacking.

According to another Redditor, cyber criminals can make use of a little-used form of communication over SMS called Protocol Data Unit.

This protocol can create a message that looks and feels like a traditional SMS but contains malicious information.

SMS hacking methods are by no means new, and can be a simple and effective way of delivering a virus to a person’s smartphone.

Only last year a SMS virus called Mazar infected over 100,000 Android phones by appearing on the victim’s phone as a MMS photo message.

Inside contained the message: “You have received a multimedia message from +[country code] [sender number] Follow the link *link here* to view the message.”

Once the victim clicked on the link the virus was downloaded and the hackers were immediately handed full administrator privileges.  

Until we get confirmation from the mobile networks that this is nothing more than another glitch the simplest advice is that if you get one of these messages delete it immediately and report it to your phone network straight away.

When it comes to hacking curiosity always kills the cat.

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