It’s been almost a year of living with Covid-19, and we’ve shown that we’re able to beat this pandemic by being kind and generous to one another!
However, at times like these, there are a few bad apples out there that are taking advantage of everyday Malaysians. Yes, we’re talking about scammers!
While we’ve focused on how scammers are targeting BigPay users previously, let’s take a look at other common forms of scams that Malaysians fall for.
1. The lucky draw, lottery or cashback scam
First and most commonly seen are the lucky draw, lottery or cashback scams that always promise a grand reward once you’ve deposited a sum of money to them.
Of course, once the money has been deposited, the scammers will get away with your hard-earned money!
Just last year, a 75-year-old woman lost nearly all of her savings (RM38,000) due to “winning a lottery ticket,” only to be ghosted by the scammers who approached her, according to a report by The Star.
In fact, a few years back, a 70-year-old man lost RM120,000 after he was tricked with a lottery scam!
The common thread for both scam cases and most others, according to the police, is that the scammers would work in pairs – a foreigner and a local – and convince the victims to help them claim a lottery or cash prize!
2. The bank impersonation scam
If you received a phone call claiming to be a bank officer who needs to verify your credit or debit card, hang up straight away! The callers will usually identify themselves as BNM representatives or a Bank employee for the card or account that you own
What usually happens with these scammers?
They’ll tell their potential victims that their identification has been compromised or their card has been used.
The victims may be required to deposit a sum of cash into an account as a guarantee for an investigation and as a way to ‘verify their identification.’
Potential victims will also be asked for sensitive information such as their card number, full name, I/C number and the Card Verification Value (CVV) number.
Scammers will provide a number to call where a fake officer will greet the victims and ask for information relating to the victim’s banking and credit card accounts.
The fraudster would then instruct the victim to transfer money to a third-party account on the pretext of safeguarding the victim’s money as well as for investigation purposes.
Never give out any of your personal or banking information over the phone! Banks or BNM representatives will never request for such sensitive information through phone calls, SMS or even e-mail!
3. Love scams
While it may sound implausible to some, but love scammers exist and are actively preying on Malaysian women! In fact, from January to October 2019, 1,070 out of 1,303 love scam cases involved women! While the majority of these scammers prey on vulnerable women, it’s worth noting that it can happen to men too!
Here are some telltale signs of a typical love scam:
Men who befriend female victims through social media and then woos them into a “relationship”
Communication will usually be restricted to calls, e-mails or instant messages only. They will avoid meeting you in person, or via video communication
Scammers will tell victims they have sent cash or expensive gifts but it is stuck in a foreign bank account
An individual claiming to be an authority will contact victims and ask for money to be banked into their personal bank account before the cash or gifts can be released to them
Of course, after doing so, the victims will never receive the promised items or cash
4. Harassing you for your OTP
If you’ve heard of scams, then you won’t be a stranger to OTP scams. Scammers would often say that you’ve got a cashback, a lucky prize or they’ve registered wrongly with your number.
However, you should never, ever give your OTP to anyone!
If you receive any suspicious messages then you should block the contact or report them to us! If you’d like to read more on scams targeting BigPay users and what we’re doing about it, click here!
Remember, staying vigilant against scammers is a job for all of us! Always remember - never give away your OTP to anyone asking for it, even when it’s claimed to be from BigPay!
Let us know what you’d like to read more about in the comments below for our next piece on BigPay’s #LetsTalkMoney series!
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