Police arrest teenager allegedly involved in online purchase scams

The 18-year-old man is believed to be involved in an online purchase scam by selling online discounted tickets to the Ultra Music Festival.
The 18-year-old man is believed to be involved in an online purchase scam by selling online discounted tickets to the Ultra Music Festival.ST PHOTO: ANJALI RAGURAMAN

SINGAPORE - Police have arrested an 18-year-old man who is believed to be involved in multiple cases of online purchase scams.

The police received several reports between Aug 23 and Sept 5 from victims who were purportedly cheated by a seller who had offered online discounted tickets to the Ultra Music Festival.

The two-day dance music festival took place at Bayfront Avenue on Sept 10 and 11, and original tickets were selling for between US$115 (S$157) and US$190 (S$259) on the music festival's website. It featured the who's who of the electronic dance music world, including Norwegian superstar DJ-producer Kygo and Canada's deadmau5.

After payments were made by the victims, the suspect became uncontactable.

Following investigations by officers from Tanglin Division, the suspect was arrested along Jalan Chegar on Thursday (Sept 15).

In a press release on Friday, the police reminded members of the public to take the following precautions when making online purchases:

- Make online purchases from reputable vendors. If advanced payments are necessary, make transactions only with people you know and trust.

- Check that the person or company you buy from is physically located where they claim to be. Check the seller's track record and make inquiries with customers about the service received.

- Never give your bank account numbers, credit card numbers and personal information to anyone you do not know or trust. Also, do not provide any information that is not necessary to make the purchase.

- Be mindful that scammers may use a local back account for the transaction to enhance their credibility. The bank account owner may not be the person communicating with you online.