It could start like this: A call comes to your hand phone…
Someone I know: Just got a call from handphone number telling me my line was used to spread illegal messages in the Perak region and I need to report in to police HQ within 1 hour, can make it in time???
His response: Since I happen to be 5 minutes away from police HQ in town, told caller I’ll just walk in and report, thanks
Another version: This happened to me in 2018…
Caller: Someone reported your car being involved in a hit-and-run just now. Can you come down to the station? When I asked which police station, I was told some place in Kuching but I am in Ipoh😂
What would you do if you got a call?
Here is an article that could help.
‘Police’ calling you? Grill the caller, says CCID deputy director
Ali Imran Mohd Noordin & Bernama
Published: Nov 26, 2018 12:01 PM ⋅Updated: 1:19 PM
If you receive a call from someone purportedly calling from a police station, don’t panic or be afraid.
This is the message Federal Police Commercial Crime Investigation Department deputy director (cybercrime and multimedia investigations) SAC Ahmad Noordin Ismail would like to convey to the public.
In fact, the call recipient has every right to ask the caller to reveal his full name, the police station where he is based, identification number and the name and details of his superior officer.
Grilling the caller can save the person on the other end of the line from being duped by syndicates that specialise in “telecommunication fraud“, which is also known as the Macau scam. The scammers’ signature modus operandi is posing as police, Customs, Bank Negara or Inland Revenue Board officers.
Instilling fear into victims
The callers have also been known to identify themselves as representatives of the court or private financial institutions and they usually make their victims feel fearful by telling them they have “a problem with the authorities” or an outstanding summons or tax issue related to goods imported by them or bank loan repayments that are overdue.
“Our people are so gullible. When the caller says he is from a police station, they believe him instantly,” Ahmad Noordin commented during RTM’s Bicara Khas programme aired in mid-October.
Overcome with fear, the victim will usually resort to taking a shortcut to resolve the problem he or she is supposed to be mired in. This is when the syndicate seizes the opportunity to fleece the victim, who may be instructed to deposit a certain sum of money into an account.
Things can get worse if the syndicate succeeds in extracting the victim’s personal and financial details, to the extent of taking control of the victim’s bank account.
Spoofing – pretending to be an authority figure
One of the reasons many people fall victim to these fraudulent calls is the fact that they can see the caller’s identification on the phone screen, which displays the telephone number of the police station, bank or other organisations the caller is purportedly calling from. Hence, at a glance, the identity of the caller seems genuine.
“If the caller claims he is from the police, you don’t have to entertain them. Just tell them that you are heading to the nearest police station to sort out the problem,” he said, adding that the police have never instructed that summons or other payments be settled via automated teller machines or by depositing the money into an account.
Verify all callers
Zulkarnain also said that in line with the practice of tabayyun, that is, checking and verifying news and information before accepting it as true, people should also check the authenticity of the calls they receive.
How do they go about verifying a call? According to Zulkarnain, to go on the offensive and protect themselves, all they have to do is approach the nearest police station or branch of the bank with which they have dealings.
“Do you have the phone number of the nearest police station in the area where you live? Do you have the phone number of the branch of the bank where you have opened an account? Not many people keep these contact numbers but they come in handy when you want to verify a suspicious call,” he added.