The Police would like to remind the public to be discerning online shoppers, especially when ordering popular electronic products online from third-party resellers, such as the new iPhone 14. Since October 2022, at least 118 victims have fallen prey to e-commerce scams involving the sales of iPhone, with total losses amounting to at least $389,000.
In these cases, the victims would be enticed by offers of the electronic item for sale, posted by sellers on online platforms such as Carousell. Victims would be asked to contact the sellers via phone calls or video calls. After parties agree on the price, victims would be asked to transfer the payment to the seller’s bank account in advance, before being provided with a location to pick up the product. Victims would proceed to the locations to meet the seller, who would not turn up.
Members of the public are advised to remain vigilant, as scammers might take the opportunity to ask online shoppers to make advance payments for the electronic devices such as the newly launched iPhone 14 with no intention of delivering them.
The Police would like to advise members of the public to adopt the following crime prevention measures when they purchase electronic products online:
- Purchase only from authorised sellers or reputable sources. Buying cheap electronic products from resellers is risky – If the price is too good to be true, it probably is.
- Get buyer protection by using in-built payment options that release payment to the seller only upon delivery. Whenever possible, avoid making advance payments or direct bank transfers to sellers as this method does not offer any protection to buyers; and
- Scammers may entice victims into buying popular products and offer them a better deal if bank transfer payments are made directly to them. They may also use a local bank account or provide a copy of a NRIC/driver’s licence to make you believe that they are genuine sellers. Do not fall for it!
If you have information related to such crimes or if you are in doubt, please call the Police Hotline at 1800-255-0000, or submit it online at www.police.gov.sg/iwitness. Please dial ‘999’ if you require urgent Police assistance.
For more information on scams, members of the public can visit www.scamalert.sg or call the Anti-Scam Hotline at 1800-722-6688. Join the ‘Spot the Signs. Stop the Crimes’ campaign at www.scamalert.sg/fight by signing up as an advocate to receive up-to-date messages and share them with your family and friends. Together, we can help stop scams and prevent our loved ones from becoming the next victim.
PUBLIC AFFAIRS DEPARTMENT
SINGAPORE POLICE FORCE
04 October 2022 @ 7:50 PM