There has been a rise in scammers calling and messaging victims, pretending to be friends, family members, or colleagues, and requesting loans from unsuspecting victims. These scammers will use scam tactics to gain your trust, claiming financial difficulties and citing the need for funds due to a medical emergency or paying for their business. Scammers can also contact victims via WhatsApp, Telegram, Viber Call, Facebook, and Instagram, with their display picture as the friend they claimed to be.
Example of a common scam tactics
- Victims receive a call from someone who confuses them with questions such as “Guess who I am?” or “You don’t remember me?”.
- Victims would then think that the caller is someone they are acquainted with, responding with the name of a friend with whom they feel most resembles the caller’s voice.
- The scammer will assume the identity of this “friend” and claim to have lost their mobile phone or changed their contact number.
- After gaining the victim’s trust, the scammer will ask for a loan citing financial difficulties or having gotten into trouble with the law to gain sympathy.
What should you look out for?
- Beware of unusual requests received over the phone or via messages, even if they appear to be from someone you know.
- Hang up immediately if you are suspicious or the caller cannot identify themselves correctly.
- Be wary of calls with the ”+“ prefix as they are international calls and common numbers that appear to be fraudulent.
- Always verify requests with your friends, family, and colleagues via physical meet-ups or previously established contact details.
- Never send money to people you do not know or have not met in person before.
This might seem like a very far-flung threat to many people, but it happens daily. I know two people who were tricked like this. Once the money leaves your bank account, it is gone. Be careful, as these scammers are professionals and know exactly what they are doing.
Please share with anyone you think might be vulnerable.
All the very best wherever you are in the world 🙂
Incognito Privacy Care Team.