Victims cheated of $5.3m this year by scammers from China
There have been 92 reports of China officials impersonation scams between January and May this year, with victims cheated of at least $5.3 million, said the police in an advisory yesterday.
Scammers would impersonate staff members from courier companies or government officials to manipulate victims into disclosing personal information such as their bank account details.
Victims were purportedly given fake information such as being told that they were involved in a crime and were required to assist in investigations.
Non-compliance would lead to victims being threatened with jail time.
In some cases, victims were instructed by officers purportedly from China to scan a QR code, before making payment transfers via Bitcoin vending machines. The scammers would hold the phone line to disallow victims to authenticate the call.
The Singapore Police Force (SPF) would like to advise members of the public to ignore such calls and instructions.
Scammers may use spoofing technology to mask their real numbers, said the police.
Thus, if a suspicious call is made from a local number, members of the public should hang up, wait and then call the number back to verify its validity.
At all times, members of the public should not provide personal information such as their name, identification number and bank account or credit card details to these callers. - TATIANA MOHAMAD ROSLI