I’m sure you have heard of scammer calls, scammer emails and scammer strangers. However, have you heard of virtual scam kidnappings?
In Australia, there is a scamming trend that targets vulnerable foreign student, especially those from China. Criminal gangs threatened them to fake their kidnappings as part of a global extortion racket. For instance, in one case, the father of a 22-year-old Chinese student paid more than $1.4 million after being sent a video of his daughter tied up in an unknown location.
Photo courtesy of CNN
So What’s Virtual Kidnapping?
Step 1: Scammers make calls to random numbers and speak in Mandarin
Step 2: Scammers will claim themselves as part of a Chinese authority, such as an embassy or police.
Step 3: Scammers will convince the victim they are part of a crime in China and threaten them with extradition charges back to China.
Step 4: Scammers mask their physical location with technology by programming their number similar to ACTUAL Chinese authorities. Even if you look up, you will get cheated by the similarity.
Step 5: Victims then are left with 2 choices- transfer the money into offshore accounts or fake their own kidnappings.
Step 6: If the victims choose the 2nd option, they will take photos of themselves bound and blindfolded and send to their families for ransom demands.
Imagine you have a son or daughter in Australia and she is cheating your money by faking her kidnapping. I think I'll get a HEART ATTACK!
According to CNN, there were 1,172 reports made last year about “Chinese authority” phone scams. Chinese students are usually the most targeted groups as they do not speak English and more inclined to follow authorities.
Similar scams have also been reported in the USA and Canada.
Next time if you receive a call from a SUSPICIOUS Chinese authority, just HANG UP!
Credits to CNN for the story.
#scammers #foreignstudents #studyabroad #crime