$71k lost to new scams in just a fortnight, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper

$71k lost to new scams in just a fortnight

The start of June signals the beginning of the corporate tax filing season and the school holidays. It appears to be hunting season for scammers too.

Several new scam variants have been detected since the start of the month, with the authorities issuing numerous alerts warning the public to be wary.

In the first half of this month, at least 67 victims lost a total of more than $71,000 to the new variants.

The Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (Iras) issued three advisories within a week, with each alerting the public about a different variant.

The variants involve spoofed e-mails with suspicious attachments, fraudulent e-mails and calls from scammers impersonating Iras officers, and WhatsApp calls from fake accounts which have the Iras logo in their profile pictures.

As travel picks up during the school holidays, scammers have also incorporated the names of travel agencies such as Chan Brothers Travel, WTS Travel and CTC Travel into their ploys.

It was reported on June 9 that scammers impersonating staff from these agencies were offering part-time jobs.

The police also warned this month of several new phishing scam variants.

A utilities phishing scam had crooks impersonating officers from PUB and SP Group, convincing victims to click on a link and provide personal and banking details to purportedly get a bill refund.

Another variant saw scammers pretending to be cleaning service providers on social media, convincing victims to download malware which stole their personal and banking information from their phones.

DBS Bank is fighting a scam campaign targeting its customers. So far, more than 60 victims have lost a total of over $60,000 to scams which involve unsolicited SMSes from senders with names like "SG-DBS" or "DBS-Notice".

Eight people have been arrested for their alleged involvement.

Members of the public can visit scamalert.sg for more information or call the anti-scam hotline on 1800-722-6688.

Anyone with information on scams can call the police hotline on 1800-255-0000.