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Police Advisory On The Resurgence Of Whatsapp Account Takeover Scams

The Police would like to remind members of the public to remain vigilant and take preventive measures against a resurgence of WhatsApp account takeover scam. 

In this variant, scammers make use of compromised WhatsApp accounts to deceive victims’ contacts into transferring money under the pretext of loans or purchasing gift cards. In some cases, scammers may also ask for banking or credit card details which will lead to unauthorised bank transactions and monetary losses suffered by victims. 

Some methods used by scammers to trick victims into giving them access to their WhatsApp account include:

  1. Victims receiving a WhatsApp message from their contacts whose WhatsApp account has been compromised, requesting for the 6-digit verification code that was sent to the victims by mistake. In some cases, scammers even impersonate the victims, claiming to have helped the victims’ friends sign up and claim prizes for fake lucky draws allegedly conducted by e-commerce retailers. The scammers would then ask the victims’ friends for their contact numbers, images of their credit or debit cards and their One-Time Passwords (OTPs) to conduct unauthorised transactions.

  2. Victims receiving a video call from scammers impersonating government or bank officials requesting for screen share under the pretext of verification of personal particulars. Scammers would then activate WhatsApp to generate a 6-digit verification code, which would appear on the victims’ screen. This is viewed by scammers through the screen sharing function without the victims’ knowledge.

Members of the public are advised to adopt the following prevention measures:

  1. Never share your WhatsApp account verification codes, personal information, banking details and OTPs with anyone;

  2. Beware of unusual requests received over WhatsApp, even if they are sent by your WhatsApp contacts;

  3. Exercise caution when receiving screen share requests. Always verify and confirm the identity of known contacts through a voice or video call before screen sharing;

  4. Protect your WhatsApp account by enabling the ‘Two-Step Verification’ feature. This can be done by opening WhatsApp and go to ‘Settings’ > ‘Account’ > ‘Two-step verification’ > ‘Enable’. (Refer to Annex A for a step-by-step guide on the setup); and,

  5. Set a device code and be aware of who has physical access to your phone. Someone who has physical access to your phone might use your WhatsApp account without your permission.

If you have any 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 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 or call the Anti-Scam Helpline at 1800-722-6688. For instructions on how to activate additional security features on WhatsApp, visit Fighting scams is a community effort. Together, we can ACT Against Scams to safeguard our community!

Annex A: Setup of Two-Step Verification 




07 June 2024 @ 2:15 PM
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