Scammers are sending phony text messages (aka Smishing or SMS Phishing) informing people in the US that they’ve been drafted by the US Army, according to Army Times.

“The false message, claiming to be the ‘United States Official Army Draft,’ informs recipients that they’ve ‘been marked eligible’ after attempts to reach them via mail,” Army Times says.

The messages tell recipients that they could face prison if they don’t respond to the message. Interestingly, while the scammers are likely attempting to exploit fears surrounding the war in Ukraine, the messages say the recipients will be deployed to Iran.

“Recipients of the fake notice are threatened with jail time if they don’t call the phone number associated with the text, which references Iran rather than Ukraine,” Army Times says. “Military Times was unable to find a match for the new message among draft scam screenshots from 2020, though, suggesting that the message may have been sent recently despite the error.”

US Army Recruiting Command (USAREC) said in a press release that similar text messages were sent in 2020 during a period of high tensions with Iran.

“Fraudulent messages about a purported military draft are once again circulating among members of the public,” USAREC said. “The messages, which are similar to those circulated two years ago, have been sent to various members of the public over the past week. These messages are false and were not initiated by the U.S. Army Recruiting Command.”

Army Recruiting Command added that in any case, a new draft would have to pass Congress before being enacted.

“The decision to enact a draft is not made at or by the U.S. Army,” USAREC said. “The Selective Service System, a separate agency outside of the Department of Defense, is the organization that manages registration for the Selective Service. In order to enact a draft, Congress would need to pass legislation authorizing it, and the resulting bill would then need to be signed by the president. A draft has not been in effect since 1973, and the U.S. military remains an all-volunteer force. While all males aged 18 through 25 are still required to register for Selective Service, doing so does not enlist them in the military.”

So, really, there’s been no draft since Richard Nixon was President of the United States. New-school security awareness training can enable your employees to see through these types of scams.