One man and three girls, aged between 18 and 27, have been arrested by the Singapore Police Force for his or her suspected involvement in the latest spate of e-commerce scams involving the sale of tickets, principally to the concert events of Taylor Swift, Coldplay, Yoasobi, Joker Xue, and Enhypen.
These arrests have been made following a joint operation carried out between January 31, 2024, and February 6, 2024, by the Commercial Affairs Department (CAD), seven Police Land Divisions, Carousell and the Government Technology Agency (GovTech).
Since January 2024, not less than 583 victims have fallen prey, with whole losses amounting to not less than SGD 223,000.
Scammers pretending to be “sellers” would publish concert tickets on the market on on-line platforms reminiscent of Telegram, Carousell, Twitter, Facebook, and Xiao Hong Shu. Victims who expressed curiosity in buying the tickets can be redirected to contact the sellers on WhatsApp or Telegram or WeChat.
In some instances, the sellers offered faux screenshots or movies of the tickets and / or the ticket buy receipts. The sellers would promise to e-mail the tickets or switch the tickets to the victims’ Ticketmaster accounts as soon as the cost was profitable. Victims would solely realise that they’d been scammed when the sellers requested for added funds, delayed supply of tickets, turn into uncontactable, or when the tickets have been discovered to be invalid on the concert day.
During the one-week operation, officers from the CAD and the seven Police Land Divisions arrested the 4 individuals via simultaneous island-wide operations.
Preliminary investigations revealed that the 4 individuals had allegedly facilitated the scam instances by opening new financial institution accounts and relinquishing them to the scammers, or relinquishing their Singpass credentials, and financial institution accounts and/or Internet banking credentials, for financial positive factors.
The relinquished Singpass credentials have been misused by the scammers to open new financial institution accounts and cellular strains. The Singpass credentials and cellular strains have been then additional exploited by the scammers to open Carousell accounts to make the faux concert tickets listings.
Another seven males and 4 girls, together with a 15-year-old male teenager, are additionally aiding in investigations. Preliminary investigations revealed that in these instances, the topics had unwittingly facilitated the scams via a number of methods.
- Most of them took on job gives on Telegram, to obtain cash in their financial institution accounts to purchase Razer present playing cards or to facilitate the receipt and switch of cash via their financial institution accounts.
- A 21-year-old lady was requested to alter her Carousell account moniker and e-mail deal with, and later, the Carousell account was discovered to be taken over by the scammers.
- A 15-year-old male teenager gave away his Carousell account to the scammer, who had provided to prime up the Carousell pockets.
Singapore Police urge individuals to take anti-scam precautions
Singapore Police have suggested members of the general public to undertake the next precautionary measures:
● ADD – ‘ScamDefend’ app and set safety features (e.g., allow two-factor (2FA) or multifactor authentication for banks, social media, Singpass accounts; set transaction limits on Internet banking transactions, together with PayNow)
● CHECK – for scam indicators with official sources (e.g., go to www.scamalert.sg or name the Anti-Scam Hotline at 1800-722-6688). If the worth is simply too good to be true, it in all probability is. Purchase solely from authorised sellers or respected sources and be cautious of engaging, time-sensitive offers the place solely restricted shares can be found.
Avoid making upfront funds to financial institution accounts belonging to unknown people and, each time doable, keep away from making advance funds or direct financial institution transfers to the vendor. Always confirm the vendor’s profile via buyer critiques and rankings.
● TELL – authorities, household, and associates about this scam so they don’t fall for it. Report the fraudulent pages to the social media websites.
If you’ve got data referring to such crimes or in case you are in doubt, name the Police Hotline at 1800-255-0000, or submit it on-line at www.police.gov.sg/iwitness. All data can be stored strictly confidential. If you require pressing Police help, please dial ‘999’.
For extra data on scams, members of the general public can go to www.scamalert.sg or name the Anti-Scam Helpline at 1800-722-6688.
Join the ‘Spot the Signs. Stop the Crimes’ marketing campaign at www.scamalert.sg/fight by signing up as an advocate to obtain up-to-date messages and share them with your loved ones and associates.
Fighting scams is a group effort. Together, the individuals of Singapore can ACT Against Scams and stop their family members from changing into the following sufferer.