Didn't see it coming: Teenager in Malaysia uses friend's account for scams

PHOTO: The Star/Asia News Network

KUALA LUMPUR - A teenager used her friend's bank account to run an online scam to swindle thousands of ringgit.

Siaw Yik Zhen and Zhang Xiao Ying, both 17, have been friends since primary school so Siaw did not suspect anything when Zhang asked to use her bank account in May earlier this year.

"She said she needed it to receive money from her grandmother.

"She would let me know when cash, varying in amount between RM100 to RM1,000 (S$33 to S$330), was banked into my account, and I would withdraw the amount and give it to her," she said.

Speaking at a press conference on Wednesday, held by MCA Public Services and Complaints Department head Datuk Seri Michael Chong, Siaw said the arrangement went on until November.

"A man named CW Teoh contacted me on Facebook and said my account was being used in an online scam.

"He told me that he had paid RM590 for shoes being sold by the scammer, and he had banked in the money into my account," she said.

Siaw had not passed the cash to her friend. She returned the money to Teoh.

When she confronted Zhang, her friend cut off all communications with her.

"In total, RM13,686 passed through my bank account to her. I am here today to let the public know about this scam," she said.

Siaw has also lodged a police report on the matter.

Chong said that it was worrying that a teenager was pulling off online scams nowadays.

"So far this year, I have received 22 cases of victims unknowingly allowing their bank accounts to be used for nefarious reason.

"Everyone should be more cautious when it comes to their bank accounts," he said.

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