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Josephine Teo warns about scams, shares an anecdote in which someone tried to trick her

Ms Teo warns that no one can avoid being targeted by cybercriminals. As such, she urges everyone to be vigilant and constantly be on the lookout for signs of a scam.

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Singapore — Minister for Communications and Information Josephine Teo warned members of the public about scams and cybercriminals in her latest Facebook post.

When attending a news/current affairs programme named “Hello Singapore”, the topic of cybercrime and scams came up. One of the hosts recounted that she used to frequently receive messages from numbers starting with the “+ 65” prefix that indicates that the call or message actually came from overseas. The host then asked if Ms Teo had experienced anything similar.

Ms Teo revealed that she was once nearly tricked by cybercriminals who had been attempting to phish her. The cybercriminals had pretended to be one of her colleagues in a consular office in Hong Kong and had asked to go over work matters with her.

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However, Ms Teo felt that something was not quite right and decided to send her colleague a text message first. It turned out that no such email had been sent and that it was just part of a scam.

According to the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore’s (CSA) recent Singapore Cyber Landscape report, the Singapore Police Force, Singapore Ministry of Manpower, and the Ministry of Education are the government organizations that are most likely to be spoofed. By selecting these organizations, scammers and cybercriminals can get members of the public to share their personal details such as bank information. In addition, they can also persuade several people into downloading programmes that allow them to access their victims’ devices and steal their data.

Ms Teo warns that no one can avoid being targeted by cybercriminals. As such, she urges everyone to be vigilant and constantly be on the lookout for signs of a scam. She also advises that if a member of the public is unsure if a call or message they receive could be a scam, they should ask around as it is better to be cyber safe than sorry.

At the end of her post, she shared a link to the full interview on Hello Singapore that took place on 9 Jul.

You Zi Xuan is an intern at The Independent SG. /TISG

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