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enter image description here

A suspected hacker was trying to get the user to input those numbers (2412958) in their address book. And user knows that the numbers are weird.

Can URLs be shortened in texts like that?

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  • 1
    By definition, that's not a URL. It might be a link to something, though. If these are just numbers, then no.
    – schroeder
    Aug 27 '19 at 14:23
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    As I say, it is not a URL, by definition. It might direct a phone to go somewhere bad, but I can't tell by just the numbers. And the redirection is not a URL.
    – schroeder
    Aug 27 '19 at 14:31
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    Technically, 2412598 could be an IP address expressed as an integer, but it appears to come out as 0.36.209.158, which would be a nonsense address. More likely the attack involves calling or sending a message to that phone number.
    – IMSoP
    Aug 27 '19 at 15:41
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    It would be useful to provide a transcript and rough translation of the other text in the screenshot for those of us who don't speak the language shown (Korean?)
    – IMSoP
    Aug 27 '19 at 15:43
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    Depending on the application and type of phone, the "linkification" could be being done locally. On my Android phone, in both text messages and emails, things that look like they might be a phone-number (including short-form SMS numbers, like the above) or that look vaguely like dates are often turned into a link that takes you to the dialer/message-compose-screen/calendar as appropriate.
    – TripeHound
    Aug 30 '19 at 7:13
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What you see is a SMS Short code.

Although IP address can be converted to decimal, the phone SMS application will not see it as an URL because "http" prefix is missing.

A smartphone SMS message box application usually does the following data highlights and link (parsing) for user conveniences.

  • URL with a http prefix. Let you click and open it from a browser
  • Phone number. Let you click and dial the number
  • Any number that looks like SMS short or long code. Let you click and open SMS compose box and use the code as the recipient.

Since every country SMS short code and long code length are vary, it is easier for developer simply parse a 5~8 digits number as short code. Although this is a bad idea when many services start sending Multi-factor authentication number to SMS.

A rogue SMS scammer can bait the user by asking them to reply to the short code with a blank response. When the gullible user response to it, the message will subscribe the user phone with a useless push message, which will charge the user $2~$10 from time to time (weekly/fortnight/month). Such fraud/abuse is done using a method called Reverse SMS billing.

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Yes phishing links can be converted to numbers or any text with random characters.

But in your case the decimal number is not a phishing link. The number 2412958 when converted , translates to IP 0.36.209.158. This IP is part of IANA Special Use reserved IP address pool , i.e, this IP pool is maintained by IANA and will not be used to host phishing sites.

But there is still a chance that the decimal may have embedded hyperlink in it and when clicked on it , may open or redirect to a phishing link. You may see if it redirects to hyperlink, by hovering your mouse over it. The link will be present on the bottom left of your browser.

References:

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Yes it is possible. It's called IPv4 to IP Decimal Conversion, but your messenger thinks of it as phone number (I checked on WhatsApp and Android Messenger) and so will give you a choice to either open it via apps that call/message (true caller and such). Also 2412958 might not work.

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  • thanks! It will be helpful to twitter Korean users for preventing hacking
    – Coder_H
    Aug 28 '19 at 16:37
  • 2
    Yes it is possible, but that's not what this is - it's not a URL and a phone is not going to interpret the numbers as an IP address.
    – schroeder
    Aug 30 '19 at 14:29

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