Be wary of 'cognitive hacking' to avoid scammers, says MCMC

KUALA LUMPUR: People need to be aware of "cognitive hacking" to safeguard themselves from scammers, says Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) chief regulatory officer Datuk Zulkarnain Mohd Yasin

He said cognitive hacking occurs when victims are unable to rationalise and act according to their emotions, thus opening up opportunities for scammers to carry out their activities.

Zulkarnain added that this may emerge as a result of data mining by fraudulent criminals which gives them an advantage when it comes to manipulating the thoughts and attitudes of victims.

"Scammers now hack our mind so that our rationality will be silenced or stuck. What is important when we receive a suspicious call is to pause. This is because their tactics are to intimidate us and ask us to take immediate action in a state of fear, in which rational thought does not occur," he said when speaking on Bernama TV's Ruang Bicara on Tuesday (Oct 3) night

Zulkarnain said when faced with such a situation, individuals need to stop for a moment to think, hang up and ask for a third party's opinion or do a self-check to verify any calls that are found to be suspicious.

"When we encounter something that is uncertain or even doubtful, we should stop and check. Those are the two things we have to train ourselves," he said. - Bernama

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