ACG-CYBER SECURITY BULLETIN NO 131 UNDERSTANDING THE RISK OF ONLINE SCAM
The following information was obtained from different cyber security sources for notification to all parties concerned pursuant to the mandate of the Philippine National Police Anti-Cybercrime Group (PNP ACG).
The information provided was classified as “Restricted” pursuant to the PNP Regulation 200-012 on Document Security and Impact Rating as high based on PNP Information Communication Technology (ICT) Security Manual s.2010-01 p. 22 and p.129.
A scam is a term used to describe any fraudulent business or scheme that takes money or other goods from an unsuspecting person. With the world becoming more connected, online scams have increased, and it's often up to you to help stay cautious with people on the Internet.
There are thousands of types of scams today, but most boil down to stealing money, property, or information. Below is an overview of common scams:
“Unexpected prize scams” include lottery scams, scratchie scams and travel scams. These scams can be delivered online, by telephone or by mail. They inform you that you have won a prize (eg. a large sum of money, shopping vouchers, a free holiday or travel related products), and to claim it you are asked to send money or provide personal information.
“Dating and romance scams” are particularly convincing because they appeal to your romantic or compassionate side. They play on emotional triggers to get you to provide money, gifts or personal details.
“Threat and extortion scams” include ‘ransomware’, ‘malware’ and ‘hit man’ scams. Ransomware and 'malware' scams can involve harmful software being placed on your computer. This can give criminals access to your personal information, which may result in loss of data or prevent you from accessing your programs and files. Scammers then demand payment before allowing you to access your computer again.
“Job scams” target people who are looking for a new job or who want to work from home. Often these scams promise a high income for little work but request an up-front payment before starting work. Investment scams involve scammers contacting you via unsolicited phone calls or email with offers of investments in lucrative schemes that will provide attractive returns. In many cases, scammers use sophisticated and genuine looking websites to convince consumers their offers are legitimate.
To avoid this, uninvited contacts from people or businesses, whether it's over the phone, by mail, email, in person or on a social networking site, always consider the possibility that the approach may be a scam.
All PNP personnel as well as the public are advised to follow the tips in order to avoid the risk of Online Scam, to wit:
- Never give out personal information. This can be used to steal your identity and access accounts.
- Don’t make any advanced payments until you are sure the company you’re dealing with is legitimate.
- Keep operating system and virus protection software up-to-date. Don’t ignore updates as these can often include patches to protect against new kinds of scams, viruses and ransomware. This goes for mobile devices as well.
- If you’re unsure about any other kind of company, you can look them up on internet to find out their background, or search for reviews online.
- Avoid any unexpected contact. by phone calls, letters and emails.
For additional information, please refer to the following websites:
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