My letter to The New Paper on the above matter is published in this newspaper on Monday 6th June 2016.
I refer to the reports of a “parcel scam” and how a remittance company employee spotted it.
Mrs Richelle Ang (above), a senior customer officer at Western Union, received a commendation letter from the police for helping to save a 62-year-old lady from falling victim to the scam.
It helped that Mrs Ang has been trained to spot such scams.
Typically, they involve a caller telling the victims that a parcel for them has been detained by foreign authorities and can be delivered only on payment of an “administration fee”.
It was also reported that the police had received 400 reports about a “DHL” scam in which culprits impersonate staff from courier companies like DHL and either get victims to pass their personal details or transfer money.
I, too, received a recorded message in Mandarin on my mobile phone recently and it seemed to be from a woman in China.
Earlier, I had received another recorded message from a Mandarin speaking woman, but from a local listed phone number.
I do not know how these scammers get our phone numbers.
I raised the matter up with Singtel, but they informed me that their policy is that they can act on the complaint only if the same phone number appears three times on my phone.
I am sure they scammers are aware of this and they keep using different phone numbers to avoid detection.
Perhaps, the police can collaborate with the telcos, like they have done with the remittance company staff to stop these scammers before more innocent people lose their money..
RAYMOND ANTHONY FERNANDO