On 17 October 2018, the Police received a report from a 22-year-old man who informed that a large sum of money had been transferred from his bank account without his consent. He had earlier received a call from someone who informed that he had been linked to an alleged kidnapping incident. The man was directed to two separate phishing websites, where he was instructed to key in his bank account details at each of the webpage, and download a software which allowed the computer to be accessed remotely. The man later found out that $49,500 had been transferred from his bank account without his consent. Investigations are ongoing.

Members of the public are advised to take the following precautions when they receive unsolicited calls, especially from unknown parties:

a. Ignore the calls. Scammers may use Caller ID spoofing technology to mask the actual phone number and display a different number. Calls that appear to be from a local number may not actually be made from Singapore. If you receive a suspicious call from a local number, hang up, wait five minutes, then call the number back to check the validity of the request.

b. Look for signs that you are visiting a secure website as phishing websites may look genuine. Secure websites use 'https:' instead of 'http:' at the start of the internet address, or display a closed padlock or unbroken key icon at the bottom right corner of your browser window. They are generally encrypted to protect your details. Always type in the full URL of the bank into the address bar or use the official mobile banking application to ensure that you are using legitimate banking services.

c. Refrain from giving out personal information and bank details, whether on the website or to callers over the phone. Personal information and bank details such as internet bank account usernames and passwords, OTP codes from tokens, are useful to criminals.

d. Report any suspicious transactions to your bank immediately.

e. Do not download any softwares from untrusted sources.

f. Call a trusted friend or talk to a relative before you act. You may be overwhelmed by emotion and err in your judgment.

If you wish to provide any information related to such scams, please call the Police hotline at 1800-255-0000, or submit it online at www.police.gov.sg/iwitness. If you require urgent Police assistance, please dial '999'.

To seek scam-related advice, you may call the anti-scam helpline at 1800-722-6688 or go to www.scamalert.sg. Help spread the word and share this advisory with your family and friends to prevent them from becoming the next victim of scam.

Source: Singapore Police Force