The Police have observed an increase in phishing scams where scammers would impersonate OCBC Bank and target victims through SMSes. Since 1 December 2021 to date, at least 469 victims have fallen prey to such scams with reported losses amounting to at least $8.5 million. Most of the amount was lost over the past two weeks.
Victims would receive unsolicited SMSes claiming that there were issues with their banking accounts, and they would be asked to click on a link to resolve the issue. Upon clicking on the links embedded in the text messages, victims would be redirected to fake bank websites and asked to key in their iBanking account login details. Victims would discover that they had been scammed when they received notifications informing them of unauthorised transactions charged to their bank accounts.
Once the funds have been fraudulently transferred out of the victim’s bank account, it would be challenging and difficult to recover the stolen monies. OCBC Bank has warned its customers about the phishing SMSes using several different channels including its online banking platforms, social media page and media advisory. The Police would like to remind members of the public to follow these crime prevention measures:
- Do not click on dubious URL links provided in unsolicited text messages. OCBC will not send SMSes containing Bit.ly links;
- Always verify the authenticity of the information with the official website or sources;
- Never disclose your personal or Internet banking details and one-time password (OTP) to anyone; and
- Report any fraudulent transactions to your bank immediately.
If you have any information relating to such crimes, 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’.
For more information on scams, members of the public can visit www.scamalert.sg or call the Anti-Scam Hotline at 1800-722-6688. Join the ‘Spot the Signs. Stop the Crimes’ campaign at www.scamalert.sg/fight by signing up as an advocate to receive up-to-date messages and share them with your family and friends. Together, we can help stop scams and prevent our loved ones from becoming the next victim.
SINGAPORE POLICE FORCE
30 December 2021 @ 6:40 PM