Taiwan, Chinese syndicates using local numbers for scams

 |Nov 8, 2017

KUALA LUMPUR: The police have uncovered fraud cases committed through fake telephone calls purportedly made from financial institutions or even the police, masterminded by syndicates from Taiwan and China, and using local and international lines from Hong Kong.

Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM) head of corporate communications Datuk Asmawati Ahmad said police had received many complaints of late from victims duped by false calls.

These have been categorised as telecommunications fraud and called the Macau scam.

“The Macau scam has four modi operandi – a lucky draw, ransom demand, spoofing by claiming to be a police/government agency officer and spoofing by claiming to be from Bank Negara Malaysia or commercial banks.

“Spoofing is a technique where the caller (syndicate member) will communicate using a voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) which allows him to use a random number to dupe the victim who sees the number on his phone screen,” she said in a media statement here on Tuesday.

Asmawati said with the lucky draw scam, victims would get a telephone call informing them that they had won millions of dollars from a Hong Kong company. The victims would be asked to supply their telephone number to be contacted if they wanted to claim the prize.

“The victim would then be asked to transfer money to certain accounts to prevent his account from being frozen by the authorities.

“With spoofing of Bank Negara or commercial bank officers, the victim would get a telephone call from a person claiming to be a bank officer who says that he had failed to pay his credit card,” she said.

The victim would then be told to contact a person, supposedly a Bank Negara officer, to avoid getting blacklisted or have his account frozen, and to transfer money to a bank account through e-banking or cash deposit machines.

Asmawati said in the case of ransom demands, the victim would get a telephone call from a person who said his child or relative had been kidnapped and he had to pay the ransom into a bank account.

“PDRM advises the public to be wary and not be duped by these tricks, do not panic, and do not follow the instructions given by the caller. End the call and contact the police or financial institution immediately,” she said.

She also advised the public not to call back the number which contacted them but to get the official number of the company, organisation or institution involved for further clarification.

“Do not reveal your bank account number, ATM or credit card number to unknown persons. PDRM requests the cooperation of those who have been duped to lodge police reports,” she said. – Bernama