Police warn of scam callers impersonating friends to borrow money

The police advised people to be wary of unusual requests received.
The police advised people to be wary of unusual requests received.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - The police have warned of a scam where callers would pretend to be friends of the recipients and ask them for money.

In a statement on Wednesday (Aug 18), the police said they have noticed this "continued trend in a scam variant", where callers from unknown numbers would ask the victims questions like "Guess who am I? You can't remember me?".

In such cases, the victims reply to the caller with the names of their friends who they believed was the caller.

Then, the caller assumes the identity of one of the mentioned friends and claims to have lost their mobile phone or changed their contact number.

"The caller would contact the victims subsequently, asking for a loan due to financial difficulties or because they got into trouble with the law," the police said.

The victims are then asked to transfer the money to bank accounts.

The police said: "Victims would only discover that they had been scammed when they contacted their friends and realised that they had not contacted the victims nor changed their contact number."

The police advised people to be wary of unusual requests received, even if they appeared to be from family or friends, and to never send money to people they do not know or have not met in person.

Check with the family member or friend who purportedly made the request through alternative means, such as physical meet-ups or using previously established contact details, the police added.

Those with information on such scams can call the police on 1800-255-0000 or submit it at this website.

More scam-related advice can be found via the anti-scam hotline on 1800-722-6688 or at this website.