SHAH ALAM: Police reports on commercial crimes in Selangor went up by 37.27% in 2018, compared with the year before.
Selangor Commercial Crime Investigations Department (CCID) chief Asst Comm Harjinder Kaur Gurdial Singh said a total of 40,811 police reports were made in 2018, compared with 25,602 reports made in 2017.
"The 40,811 reports led to 4,883 cases, with a loss at about RM519.54mil, being investigated," she said in a statement on Friday (Jan 18).
Out of the 4,883 cases, 4,140 of them involved cheating amounting to RM360.7mil in losses.
Harjinder said the Macau scam was a popular example of a cheating case with 927 cases in 2018, resulting with around RM50.4mil in losses.
This type of scam often starts with a phone call from someone pretending to be an officer from a bank, government agency or debt collector.
The scammer will then claim that the potential victim owes money or has an unpaid fine, often with a very short window of less than an hour to settle the payment or face “dire consequences”.
"Another popular one is the non-existent loan scam, where victims are promised easy loans as long as they pay 'lawyer fees' first – only to find out too late that there is no loan," Harjinder said.
It is believed that the increase in police reports indicated an increase in the number of victims coming forward.
"Most of the victims are working in the private sector who are enticed by the lure of easy money.
"We urge everyone to be more wary of offers on the phone or online that seem too good to be true, in order to not fall victim to such scams," she said.
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