Singapore

4-day scam operation prevents more than 1,100 victims from losing over $5m


SINGAPORE –A four-day operation conducted by The Anti-Scam Centre (ASC) of the Singapore Police Force, in collaboration with six banks, prevented losses of over $5.1 million from more than 1,100 victims.

The police also managed to stop one scam victim from committing suicide, after he had become so distressed upon realising he had been cheated.

In a statement on Saturday, the police said the operation took place from Nov 14 to 17 and involved CIMB, DBS, HSBC, OCBC, Standard Chartered Bank and UOB.

Officers from ASC and seven police land divisions worked with staff from six banks located in the same area and conducted “live interventions” by analysing fund flows of more than 90 bank accounts that were surfaced in investment and job scam reports.

They engaged unsuspecting victims who had been transferring monies into these scam-tainted bank accounts.

More than 1,100 unsuspecting victims were alerted that they could have fallen prey to scams and were advised to stop any further monetary transfers.

Many of the victims only realised they had been deceived after they were engaged and convinced by the police. Scam proceeds amounting to more than $1.5 million were seized, and the police further prevented these victims from financial losses amounting to more than $5.1 million.

The police added that during one of the phone engagements, a job scam victim became distressed when he realised that he was cheated of more than $5,000, which he had borrowed from friends.

“Sensing that something was amiss, police officers proceeded to the victim’s residence to check on him and managed to dissuade him from self-harm,” said the police.

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The police urged members of the public to be wary when receiving unsolicited offers of investment or job opportunities via social media platforms or chat applications, and also to understand that investments with high returns will come with high risks.

Members of the public should always check with a licensed financial advisor before making any investment, and not be enticed by “jobs” that promise the convenience of working from home and unusually high salary for relatively easy responsibilities.

“No legitimate business will require employees to utilise their own bank accounts to receive monies on the business’ behalf,” said the police.

For more information on scams, members of the public can visit www.scamalert.sg or call the Anti-Scam Hotline at 1800-722-6688. Anyone with information on such scams may call the Police hotline at 1800-255-0000 or submit information online at www.police.gov.sg/iwitness



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