Police advisory: New tactics used by phone scammers. Stay alert!

The Police are aware that some members of the public have received phone calls from callers claiming to be the staff of telecommunications companies based in either China or Singapore.

The recipients of such calls would first hear an automated Mandarin voice message telling them that their phone lines would be terminated and that they had to enter ‘1’ to get further instructions, purportedly from either the Chinese Police or a telecommunications company staff. Recipients were then told that a mobile phone number registered under their names had been used for illicit activities such as the operating of an online gambling website and access to illegal websites etc. The Mandarin-speaking operator would then go on to ask for personal information such as name, identification card number, nationality and contact number in order to assist in resolving the matter.

The Police would like to advise members of the public to take the following precautions when they receive such unsolicited calls, especially from unknown parties:

– Ignore the calls. The 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.

– Do not follow the caller’s instruction and do not give 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.

If you wish to provide any information, 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 being the next victim of scam.