JOHOR police chief Comm Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay says parents should access their children’s social media accounts so that they can monitor their activity online.
“The element of trust plays a major role and a strong foundation in this, coupled with good communication, will also make it much easier for children to share their activities with parents,” he said when contacted.
Comm Ayob added that parents should always remind their children not to engage in conversation with unknown individuals on social media.
According to the Johor Police Commercial Crime Investigations Department, a total of 4,192 investigations papers (IP) were opened in 2019 with a slight decrease of 4,165 IP last year.
This year, a total of 1,403 IPs had been opened from January to May involving various types of commercial crime.
“From the 2019 total, 50 involved youths, where 15 were in secondary school and 35 from private and public universities.
“The number of victims increased in 2020 with 62, comprising 19 secondary schoolchildren and 42 from higher education institutions,” said Comm Ayob.
The cases mostly involved online purchases, fake investments, non-existent moneylenders, love scams and pornographic content, he elaborated.
He said statistics showed that less than 2% of cybercrime victims were secondary and tertiary education students.
“Nevertheless, parents should always remain vigilant and have good knowledge of scammers’ modus operandi.
“Online purchase scams occur when victims fall for an advertisement that offers a product below the normal retail price.
“There are cases where the victims are required to make additional payment as the stock of the item is limited.
“The victim would only know their fate after failing to receive the item,” he explained.
He added that the public could check information such as phone numbers and bank accounts given by sellers at https://semakmule.rmp.gov.my to avoid being scammed.
“In love scams, the victims fall for someone they got to know through social media and that person would usually ask them to make payment for ‘gifts’ held by the courier company.
“The public should also be wary of any financing offers on social media and refrain from sharing personal information to avoid becoming a scam victim,” Comm Ayob advised.