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At least 1,013 people were enticed by commission for completing simple surveys before being offered fake jobs and losing a total of at least $17.6 million since January, said police.
Victims would receive unsolicited WhatsApp or Telegram messages asking them to participate in a survey or market research and to answer a few questions. The questions were usually related to food delivery platforms such as Deliveroo and Foodpanda, tourism or events.
Upon completion of the surveys, the victims would receive a small commission.
After victims were convinced that they could earn more money, scammers would provide another WhatsApp or Telegram contact to the victims, suggesting that the victims could reach out to the contact for more rewarding jobs.
The scammers would ask the victims to perform tasks such as “boosting” the value of cryptocurrencies or “rating” mobile applications to improve their rankings on app stores.
To perform these tasks, victims had to create accounts on scam websites and transfer monies to bank accounts provided by the scammers. In some cases, victims would be instructed by scammers to put in even more of their own money for a variety of reasons.
Victims would realise that they had been scammed when they failed to withdraw their commission or when the scammers could no longer be contacted.
You are advised to adopt the following precautionary measures:
If you have any information relating 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.
All information will be kept strictly confidential. If you require urgent police assistance, please dial "999".