Public falling victim to scammers calling from hacked official bank phone lines

ARNAZ M. KHAIRUL




MALACCA: The public is becoming increasingly worried over how scammers are able to use the official telephone lines of major banks to try to cheat bank customers.

MCA Youth central committee member and Hang Tuah Jaya Municipal councillor Dennis Lee raised the alarm over such incidents yesterday after he himself was targetted by such a scammer.

Though he lodged a report at the Batu Berendam police station over the incident, Lee said he is still irked over how the official telephone number of the Alliance Bank could have been used to commit such a crime.

"I received a call from this number, and this man claimed that I needed to confirm a RM4,000 transaction I made at klia2 using 'my' Alliance Bank credit card," said Lee.

"I told him I do not have an Alliance Bank credit card, but he then read out my MyKad number. I did not (tell him) whether it was correct or not. (Instead), I asked him which number I could use to call him back.

"He just told me to call him back at the number which he was calling from, and introduced himself as CK Leong," he added.

The number displayed on Lee's phone was 03-5516 9988, which is the official line for Alliance Bank.

Lee also noted the credit card number 5563 0206 4288 1169, given by the caller.

"When I called Alliance Bank, I found that there was nobody in any department there by the name of CK Leong. I also confirmed with the credit card department that there isn't a card registered under my name and that there wasn't any credit card by that number registered at the bank," said Lee.

He said his main concern now is over the dangers of such scams, as police, too, had notified him that it is rampant, with Alliance Bank and Affin Bank being the main vehicles used by scammers who have hacked their phone lines.

"The danger is that when people check, (they are assured that it) is the official number of a bank. Thus, the public will easily trust such calls to be genuine, and follow the instructions given – only to lose a lot of money to these scammers," said Lee.

He called for the authorities to look seriously into such cases, as they are becoming rampant and difficult to trace, as there aren't any telephone numbers to track.