Singapore—The recent spate of fake Foodpanda orders has been linked to loan sharks intent on harassing people, according to a report in straitstimes.com (ST).
The modus operandi is to place the bogus orders on a cash-on-delivery basis.
However, when the Foodpanda riders arrive at the delivery address, there is no one to receive and pay for the order.
At this point, the supposed “customer” can no longer be contacted.
This means a waste of time for the food delivery rider, as well as an unpaid order for the vendor, who is usually a hawker.
Apparently, these bogus orders have been plaguing Foodpanda for the past couple of months.
A spokesman for the police told ST, “The recent prank orders is related to unlicensed moneylenders making use of food suppliers and food delivery service providers to harass debtors and cause annoyance to the debtors and members of the public.”
The most recent incident of fake Foodpanda delivery orders occurred just last weekend at Bedok Reservoir.
In a Facebook post on Saturday, Mar 6, a netizen named Afzai Nizan wrote, “Just another Foodpanda prank orders again? They all waited outside, owner at home but unaware of the orders made?”
He posted pictures of at least four Foodpanda delivery personnel in their pink and grey uniforms waiting on the corridor of the customer’s unit. Police officers could be seen talking to the riders.
In a mothership.sg report, the police confirmed that they had been alerted to a case of intentional harassment at 766 Bedok Reservoir View on March 6 at about 4.53 pm.
“Preliminary investigations revealed that a residential unit had received multiple food delivery orders allegedly made by unlicensed moneylenders,” said the police.
They added that there is “zero tolerance for loan shark harassment activities. Those who deliberately cause annoyance and disruption to the public sense of safety, peace and security will be arrested and dealt with severely in accordance with the law.”
Some Foodpanda riders talked to ST about their recent experiences with bogus food orders.
The report quoted one rider named Mr C Chua, who told ST that he gets one fake order nearly every day, whereas last year, they were getting them only once a month on average.
Mr Muhammad Asyraf told ST that he got two to three fake orders per week in February.
A spokesman for Foodpanda also spoke to ST, and appealed to the public to use food delivery services, especially the cash-on-delivery option, responsibly.
“We appeal for the responsible use of food delivery services and cash-on-delivery option in consideration of food delivery riders who are working hard round the clock to deliver hot food to our homes.”
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