‘Don’t fall for love scam, victims have lost millions of ringgit’ — SCPA

Datuk John Lau Pang Heng

KUCHING, Aug 9: Sarawak Community Policing Association (SCPA) urged members of the public to be careful when befriending strangers in the social media.

Its chairman Datuk Lau Pang Heng said love scam is becoming a social concern in Malaysia because according to recent news reports, a sum totalling RM27,830,592 were cheated out of victims in the first quarter of this year.

“Last year 1,709 victims lost RM110,720,866, while in 2017, a total of 2,271 victims lost RM95,983,756 to love scams,” he said in a statement.

Lau, who recently carried out some surveys and studies on love scam in Sarawak and the whole country, said that majority of victims were ladies within the age group of 31 to 40 years old.

“Based on my study, people in the age group of 31 to 40 years are busy focusing on their career and have little time to find potential suitors.

“Scammers rely on social media like Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp to find their victims. They’ve prepared their scripts when they talk to their potential victims,” he said.

There are also other types of scams, whereby these people will introduce themselves as bank or police officers and lured their victims into believing that they are blacklisted from loans, credit card, unpaid bills and so on.

Failing to comply to these scammer’s instructions, action will be taken against the victims.

“Please do not panic when you receive this type of call. Always ask for their name and contact number. Tell them you’re busy and you will call them back later. If they refused to identify themselves, there is high possibility it is a scam call.

“Even if they give you the details you requested for, SCPA advises members of the public not to return the call, especially if it is a stranger,” he said.

Prevention is always better than cure, reminded Lau. He advised those who received such call to lodge a police report. — DayakDaily