SPF warns of scammers who take over your friends' WhatsApp accounts to scam you


Siti Hawa | March 07, 2021, 04:54 PM

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In a police advisory issued on Mar. 7, the Singapore Police Force (SPF) alerted the public of a scam that has reemerged on WhatsApp.

These scammers have gained access to victims' WhatApp accounts after obtaining the six-digit verification code either from the victims directly or through the victims' voicemail accounts, SPF said.

Compromised WhatsApp accounts used for banking-related phishing scams

To carry out the scam, scammers would take over WhatsApp accounts, impersonate victims and communicate with the victims' friends or contacts.

Scammers would then trick the contacts into providing them with their personal information or send them phishing links to fake websites to retrieve their banking credentials and One-Time Passwords (OTPs).

The victims' contacts would only realise that they have been scammed when they discover unauthorised transactions made from their bank accounts.

Here are some examples of WhatsApp messages sent by scammers through compromised WhatsApp accounts:

Photo via SPF

Here's an example of a phishing link sent by a scammer:

Photo via SPF

SPF advises the public to remain vigilant so that they do not fall prey to scammers.

Crime prevention measures

The public is advised to take note of the following crime prevention measures:

  • Never share WhatsApp account verification codes, personal information, banking details and OTPs with anyone
  • Beware of unusual requests received over WhatsApp, even if they were sent by your WhatsApp contacts
  • Protect your WhatsApp account by enabling "Two-Step Verification" feature by opening WhatsApp and going to ‘Settings’ → ‘Account’ → ‘Two-step verification’ → ‘Enable’
  • Change your voicemail account's default PIN to avoid easy access by scammers. If you have no use of the voicemail account, contact your telco service provider to deactivate the feature

For more information on scams, visit here or call the anti-scam hotline at 1800-722-6688.

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Top photos courtesy of SPF