SINGAPORE: Scammers are now masquerading as staff of telcos based in either China or Singapore over the phone, the Singapore Police Force (SPF) warned on Thursday (Aug 17) in an advisory.
They said members of the public who received such calls first heard an automated Mandarin voice message telling them their phone lines would be terminated and that they had to enter the number "1" to get further instructions. The calls were purportedly from either the Chinese police or a telco staff member.
The call recipients were 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 or accessing illegal websites.
The Mandarin-speaking operator would then go on to ask for personal information, such as the recipient's name, identification card number, nationality and contact number, claiming this was to assist in resolving the matter, the SPF said.
It advised members of the public to ignore unsolicited calls, especially from unknown parties. Scammers may use caller ID spoofing technology to mask the actual phone number, such that calls that appear to be from a local number may not actually be made from Singapore, they said.
"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," they added.
The police also advised members of the public not to give out personal information and bank details such as internet bank account usernames or passwords and one-time password codes from tokens.
Those who wish to provide information to the police can call 1800-255-0000 or submit the information online at www.police.gov.sg/iwitness.
Scam-related advice is also available by calling the anti-scam helpline at 1800-722-6688 or on the scam alert website.