From left: GCash fraud management head AJ Sibal and external affairs manager Jerome Lantin; PNP-ACG spokesperson PCAPT Michelle Sabino; GCash head of security Gibs Gumapo with Globe Telecom representatives Lito Salamat, Armando Paje and Jeumar Mendoza
GCash lauds PNP-ACG for seizure of 80,000 SIM cards used for scams
GCash, the country’s leading mobile wallet, expressed its full support to the Philippine National Police – Anti-Cybercrime Group (PNP-ACG) and the National Telecommunications Security Council (NTSC) for the seizure of over 80,000 unregistered SIM cards used for various types of scams such as e-wallet accounts takeover, phishing, love scams, and illegal gambling operations.
During a recent press conference, the PNP-ACG explained that scammers used a pirated GSM modem, which is legally issued and should only be used by telecommunication companies in the country, in sending over 300 scam texts in a span of 1-2 minutes using up to 30 unregistered SIM cards. During the investigation, it was also revealed that at least 40,000 of the seized unregistered SIM cards are from local telco providers, while others are foreign mobile SIM cards.
The usual modus operandi of these scams begins with by sending suspicious links to victims, calling the user’s mobile number posing as a telco provider or an e-wallet representative to trick users into sharing their personal information for e-wallet account takeover, or sending notices that a user has won a grand prize for a competition, lottery, or sweepstakes. Scammers also used some of the unregistered SIM cards for “love scams” to steal money from their victims, and for illegal gambling.
“Let this also serve as a warning to the public to protect their personal information from getting into the hands of cybercriminals. Scammers now use various unlawful ways to perpetrate their schemes while enjoying anonymity. I am likewise encouraging the public to be watchful and immediately report any cybercrime to the PNP-ACG so we can coordinate immediately with telcos and apprehend these scammers,” said PNP-ACG spokesperson PCAPT Michelle Sabino.
According to NTSC admin head and first admin chair Col. Willie Gonio, the collaboration between PNP-ACG, and e-wallets such as GCash, is part of its continuing effort to improve the safety of customers nationwide. “We will continue to work closely with local government units, local authorities, and our colleagues in the industry to ensure the physical security of telco infrastructure and to make sure that these illegal activities do not continue, and most importantly, to sharply increase the number of apprehended perpetrators.”
GCash reiterated that the platform employs up-to-date, world-class security technologies on its app for a more secure verification and authentication process, assuring customers of safe transactions.
“It is crucial now more than ever, that we work together with the top authorities in the country to protect Filipinos against fraudulent online transactions. GCash will continue to join forces with authorities and assist them in ensuring that illegal schemes and activities of cybercriminals who use the GCash platform are closely monitored. We will stop at nothing until they are apprehended,” said GCash head of Fraud Management Alexander Sibal.
GCash advises its customers to be very careful and vigilant, and to never share their MPINs and One-Time Passwords (OTPs).
You can download the GCash app for free on Google Play and the App store.
For more information, visit https://www.gcash.com