KAJANG: A 49-year-old teacher was cheated of RM1.13mil in a Macau scam after she was told that her car was involved in a fatal accident.
The victim was first contacted by a "police officer" about the accident and told that money laundering was involved in it.
Kajang OCPD Asst Comm Mohd Zaid Hassan said she was then directed to open two accounts and to link a telephone number provided by the suspect to these accounts.
"The victim began transferring money to the accounts supposedly to help with investigations.
"The suspect also told her to prepare bail money, and she took out personal loans with several banks and deposited the money into the same accounts," he said in a statement on Tuesday (Oct 6).
The teacher later sensed something was amiss and lodged a police report on Monday.
"In all, she lost RM1,132,475 in the incident," ACP Zaid added.
He urged the public to be cautious when dealing with anyone over the phone and not be easily duped by such tactics.
A Macau 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”.
These unsuspecting victims will then be asked to make payments to get them off the hook.
These syndicates would also pay drug addicts and the unemployed for using their bank accounts to receive payments from victims.
To make the scam more convincing, these syndicates often use Voice Over Internet Protocol or spoofing so that the caller identification number that appears on the victim's phone looks identical to the phone number of the agency they are pretending to be from.
Those with information on such crimes should contact the police hotline at 03-2052 9999 or visit the nearest police station immediately.