SINGAPORE – Phishing scams have been on the rise, with 378 people falling victim in the first two weeks of this month alone, said the police in a statement on Thursday (Nov 18).

These phishing scams typically come as text messages or e-mails from addresses impersonating trusted entities and making fake offers or claims to trick recipients into clicking on a phishing URL link.

Trusted entities include institutions like banks, government agencies, trade unions and companies such as SingPost or Grab.

An example of a known phishing scam is the SingPost parcel redirection scam.

Victims would receive an SMS – sometimes following an authentic SingPost SMS – stating: “Your parcel has been redirected to your local post office branch due to an unpaid delivery fee.” This is accompanied by a phishing URL link.

Another example is the DBS $20 commemorative note scam. Victims would receive an SMS informing them that they could receive a Bicentennial $20 note for free. The SMS carries a URL link that resembles that of the bank’s website.

Victims who click on these phishing URLs would be tricked into providing their credit/debit card details and a one-time password (OTP), allowing scammers to siphon money from their accounts.

“Victims would only realise they have been scammed when they discover unauthorised transactions made using their credit/debit card,” said the police.

The police advise the public to always verify the authenticity of information found in messages and e-mails with…

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