CPIB alerts public to fake documents circulating on WhatsApp

The Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB) has warned about fake documents circulating on WhatsApp claiming to be from the agency.

In a statement yesterday, the CPIB said it is aware that some members of the public had received such documents which indicate that certain bank accounts of individuals, companies and third parties will be frozen within 24 hours for investigation into suspected money laundering offences. They will then be asked to pay a fine.

The CPIB said the documents feature images of its logo and possibly a sign-off by a CPIB officer.

Members of the public should be on the lookout for tell-tale signs which show the documents to be fictitious, including errors in spelling or grammar. They should take the following precautions if they receive such documents:

• Call the CPIB's hotline on 1800-376-0000 for assistance to verify their authenticity.

• Do not remit or transfer any money for any transactions based on instructions given in or with the documents.

• Do not give out bank details or personal information.

The CPIB said it takes a serious view of the impersonation of public agencies for undesirable or scam purposes. Anyone with information on suspected scams based on impersonation of the CPIB or its officers can call the CPIB hotline.

A spokesman said investigations are ongoing.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 19, 2020, with the headline 'CPIB alerts public to fake documents circulating on WhatsApp'. Print Edition | Subscribe