At least $44,000 lost to currency note scammers this year: police

The scammers would search for their victims – who are sellers of old currency notes – on Facebook or Instagram, and send them “friend” or “follow” requests, said the police. (PHOTO: Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — At least $44,000 has been lost so far this year to scammers posing as interested buyers of old currency notes, said the police on Tuesday (16 April).

In its advisory posted on Facebook, the police said that at least 17 such cases have been reported since January.

Victims found on social media

The scammers would search for their victims – who are sellers of old currency notes – on Facebook or Instagram, and send them “friend” or “follow” requests. After making a connection, the scammers would then pose as collectors of old currency notes and ask victims to contact them.

In other instances, the scammers would message the victims to ask if they had old notes to sell and offer to buy them at high prices.

The victims would then be sent fake receipts as proof of successful payments made. They would also be asked to pay administrative fees to the scammers, the police added.

Some victims had also received calls or messages from so-called foreign enforcement agencies and banks informing them that they needed to transfer more money.

In all 17 reported cases, the victims eventually did not receive any payments.

Sellers beware

The police advised the public to be wary of unusual requests from strangers, as well as not make payment to unusual requests or give out your personal information, credit/debit card and bank account details to strangers.

“If a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is,” added the police.

Those who wish to provide any information related to such scams can call the police hotline at 1800-255-0000, or submit it online at www.police.gov.sg/iwitness. For more advice on such matters, members of the public can also call the anti-scam helpline at 1800-722-6688 or visit www.scamalert.sg.

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