Wednesday, February 19

Be wary of scammers, public advised

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(Seated from left) Rosli, Kameri, Naroden, Saifulbahry, Sherilyn and other community leaders, heads of government departments and participants give their thumbs-up to the programme in Bintulu.

BINTULU: The public are reminded to be on high alert for any attempts by scammers who seem to be active and always found their victims although various awareness campaigns have been carried out by the relevant authorities.

Assistant Minister of International Trade and eCommerce (Mitec) Datuk Naroden Majais said scammers target people of all backgrounds, ages and income levels, from professionals to the ordinary people.

“Scammers are getting smarter and taking advantage of new technology, using their soft skills to manipulate the individuals,” he said during the ‘Staying Safe Online’ campaign at Wisma Bintulu yesterday.

He said people fall victim to scammers because they are excited with all the promises and luxury items offered by their online friends and most cases involved women.

“Among the popular cyber scams reported in Sarawak are employment fraud, macau scam, love scam and online purchasing scam,” he said.

“Technology is important, but as a user, we cannot take it for granted on the challenges, the risks and the potential abuse of technology by the irresponsible parties,” advised Naroden.

He added technology has been proven to be a game changer on the working culture of modern society where everything is possible.

“It is a destructive change that makes the old ways irrelevant but it is part of innovation that was created to simplify our lives so that we can compete at the international level, thus this change should give us profit as a user.

“In business for example, internet and technology enable us to be at par with others, giving us a similar playing field no matter where we are or how big our investment.

“However, cyber scam is a challenge that we must be aware of and I am  sure we all have heard of cyber scams cases reported every day and probably there are some unreported cases,” Naroden said.

He thus urged the people to be alert and protect themselves from being scammed as scammers now are getting increasingly sophisticated in their attempts to get money or personal details.

On the campaign, he said it was one of the ways to educate the public by sharing relevant information on cyber scams and their modus operandi so that people would be more careful.

Also present at the event were Mitec permanent secretary Kameri Affandi, a representative of Bintulu Resident Saifulbahry Alwie, a representative of Bintulu Development Authority general manager Sherilyn Rinie, Temenggong Rosli Kamaruddin and other local community leaders.