Malaysian reporter loses $950 in scam

Exercise caution: Chong speaking to reporters as Lim looks on at Wisma MCA in Kuala Lumpur.
PHOTO: The Star/Asia News Network

KUALA LUMPUR - A freelance reporter lost RM2,900 (S$950) to a "childhood friend" after being promised RM500 commission to carry out a favour.

Lim Kai Li had on Oct 31 received a phone call from a woman claiming to be an old friend, through an unknown number.

"The caller asked me to help her buy 30 RM100 Digi prepaid reloads to sell to some Singaporeans.

"She promised me a commission of RM500 if I could help her, saying that she would sell the prepaid reloads at $100 each, " the 22-year-old said at Wisma MCA here.

Lim was initially sceptical but her "friend" assured her that she was using a new number because her old phone was broken.

Asked why she sounded different, the imposter replied that she was unwell.

Lim then purchased the prepaid reloads worth RM100 each at Aeon Anggun in Rawang after her "friend" continuously bugged her to do so.

"I only realised I had been scammed after my real friend replied to my message and said she was unaware of any commission promised to me," she said, adding that by then she had already sent the prepaid reloads to the scammer.

The victim was only able to retract one of the reload PINs after contacting the Digi service centre.

Lim suspects that her friend might have conspired with the scammer as they had only reconnected on Sept 10 and her friend knew how much she was earning.

The victim had lodged a report at the Rawang police station.

MCA Public Services and Complaints Department head Datuk Seri Michael Chong reminded the public to be wary of phone scams and to immediately contact a relative or friend whom the imposter had claimed to be.

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