The Police have observed a resurgence of e-commerce scams and would like to remind the public to be discerning when shopping online, especially when ordering baby products. Since January 2023, at least 192 victims have fallen prey to such scams, with total losses amounting to at least S$162,000. The Police have received reports lodged against allegedly fraudulent Facebook pages selling food and non-food items, such as ‘Shopping Retail’ and ‘Imported High-Quality Seafood’. Investigations are ongoing.
In this variant, scammers pretending to be “sellers” would entice victims by posting offers on baby products (e.g. diapers, strollers) either directly or through sponsored advertisements on online platforms such as Facebook. Victims who expressed interest in these deals on Facebook would be requested to contact the sellers directly via Facebook Messenger. After confirming the price and order details, victims would be asked to make payment to the seller’s bank account via PayNow. Victims would only realise that they had been scammed when they did not receive the goods and/or the “seller” becomes uncontactable.
The Police would like to advise members of the public to adopt the following precautionary measures:
- ADD - ScamShield App and set security features (e.g., enable two-factor (2FA) or multifactor authentication for banks, social media, Singpass accounts; set transaction limits on internet banking transactions, including PayNow).
- CHECK - for scam signs with official sources (e.g., visit www.scamalert.sg or call the Anti-Scam Helpline at 1800-722-6688). If the price is too good to be true, it probably is. Purchase only from authorised sellers or reputable sources and be wary of attractive, time-sensitive deals where only limited stocks are available. Avoid making upfront payments to bank accounts belonging to unknown individuals and, whenever possible, avoid making advance payments or direct bank transfers to the seller. Always verify the seller’s profile through customer reviews and ratings.
- TELL - authorities, family, and friends about this scam so they do not fall for it. Report the fraudulent pages to Facebook.
If you have information relating to such crimes or if you are in doubt, please call the Police Hotline at 1800-255-0000, or submit it online at www.police.gov.sg/iwitness. All information will be kept strictly confidential. 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 Helpline at 1800-722-6688. Fighting scams is a community effort. Together, we can ACT Against Scams and prevent our loved ones from becoming the next victim!
Examples of “sellers” on Facebook offering the sale of baby and other products ▼
SINGAPORE POLICE FORCE
22 March 2023 @ 5:15 PM