Scam targeting mandarin speakers

Scam targeting mandarin speakers

<  Back to News and Media

Published on:

May 17, 2018

Scam targeting mandarin speakers

Since late March 2018 there has been a notable spike in scams targeting the Chinese-Australian community. On most occasions the recipient receives a pre-recorded message in Mandarin asking the recipient to either press a number to be connected, or call back on the number provided in order to resolve some urgent business.

When recipients respond they are connected with someone claiming to be from one of the following: Chinese Embassy or Consulate, Beijing or Shanghai police, or DHL (delivery service). 

Multiple variations of the scam have emerged since it was first reported, however scare tactics have been utilised in all calls in an attempt to convince the recipients their identity has somehow become involved with criminal activity. Individuals have lost large sums of money to this scam and the scammers are also targeting Mandarin speakers in Canada, Singapore and the United Sates. 

In addition to the scamming payments, some members of the Chinese-Australian community have participated in elaborate acts as part of the deception, including image-based abuse, plea-bargaining with fake judiciary and extortion.

Detection

Presently the scammers are contacting individuals by phone. The caller will ask for the victim's personal information including name, passport number, Chinese ID card and/or driver licence number under the guise of "resolving the matter". At some stage after initial engagement, the criminals will insist the recipient send large amounts of money to an account. Some of the reasons the scammers say the money needs to be transferred include: to avoid deportation, to assist in catching the criminals, because their bank accounts are going to be frozen, to negotiate bail, or to prove that they are the legitimate account holder.

Prevention
  • Be wary of unsolicited phone calls where the caller is threatening you, asking for personal information or for remote access to your device. Disconnect immediately and call the legitimate organisation back to for confirmation.
  • ‍Be sure when calling organisations back that you are using their official phone number.
  • ‍Warn friends and family members of the risks and to be on the lookout for callers requesting information about you.
  • Stay up to date and follow IDCARE on Facebook and Twitter for updates.

Responding to the scam
  • Disengage from scammers immediately. 
  • If document numbers have been supplied, contact all of the document issuers (such as passport, transport etc.) and alert them of the compromise. 
  • If you have provided banking information to the scammer, contact your bank immediately. 
  • Report the event to Australian law enforcement - if money has been transferred overseas you may want to consider reporting to Chinese police. 
  • Talk to family and friends about what you have experienced. Contact IDCARE on 1300 432 273 (Aust), 0800 201 415 (NZ) if you have any concerns.

    

Disclaimer

BACK TO LATEST NEWS

Other News

IDCARE is always active in the media from radio to TV, social media and news articles. Keep up to date with what's happening at IDCARE and in the media.
Behind the mask: Unveiling the top trending scams and what’s new

Electricity bill scams, puppy scams, celebrity investment scams & the IDCARE impersonation scam

Read more...
A year in review & where we get our funding

It’s hard to believe that since 2014, IDCARE has responded to over 275,900 client engagements from people who experienced a cyber-enabled crime.

Read more...
Phishing, spoofing, spamming?

Cyber-lingo explained in the latest edition of The Cyber Sushi.

Read more...
Rental scams: Unpacked in the Cyber Sushi

Those looking to rent a home should read this issue!!

Read more...

CONTACT US

IDCARE is here to provide you with specialist support and guidance when faced with a cyber and identity related issue. Contact one of our Identity & Cyber Security Case Managers to learn more about our Support Services and how we can help you.   

Get help
ONLINE FORM

Submit a web request

Call Centre Icon

Call our AUSTRALIAn
NATIONAL CASE MANAGEMENT CENTRE

1800 595 160

Mon - Fri: 8am - 5pm AEST

QLD: 07 3555 5900
ACT & NSW: 02 8999 3356
VIC: 03 7018 2366
NT, SA & WA08 7078 7741

Call Centre Icon

call our NEW ZEALAND
NATIONAL CASE MANAGEMENT CENTRE

0800 121 068

Mon - Fri: 10am - 7pm NZST

AKL: 09 884 4440