THE PUBLIC has been warned to beware of hackers accessing Facebook accounts to dupe others to send money using e-wallets.
The Department of Special Investigation (DSI) issued the alert on Monday citing a recent case where a group of 20 youths used Internet cafes and computer game shops in Chanthaburi to dupe people nationwide of Bt7 million.
An expert from True Corporation told the press con?ference that people should not share personal informa?tion on social media or use easy-to-guess passwords.
The DSI’s Bureau of Technology and Cyber Crime director Pol Lt Col Wichai Suwanprasert, said the unnamed leader of the gang, which mostly comprised of boys aged 15-16 years old, had been involved in the crime from high school through to university.
Wichai said the gang hacked or forged other people’s Facebook pages to dupe the victims’ friends by offering cheap products online but failed to deliver the goods, or by pretending to be a company offering lucky draw prizes that require a fee.
He said many of the Internet cafes or computer game shops did not keep records of the users’ browser histo?ry despite the law requiring that the information should be kept for 90 days.
The gang also set up a bogus job-offering page to have job-seeking victims work for them by opening bank accounts to receive money from the victims, which would then be transferred to the gang’s e-wallet. The job-seek?ing victims got paid at Bt500 to Bt1,000 daily for unknowingly breaking the law on the gang’s behalf.
Many other victims were lured to buy cell phone SIM cards for “the job” while the gang used the victims’ ID card numbers to apply for e-wallets.
Athipat Ploypraikaew, True Corporation’s fraud risk management division director, said that his company’s e-wallet service has always been strict in ensuring safe?ty for customers who wired money online.
He urged people not to put their personal informa?tion – such as address, phone number, a Thai ID card photo or those of family members – on social media as they could be used by criminals.
Passwords for social media accounts should also be made difficult by not using phone numbers, birthday or student card numbers, he said.
Anyone contacted via Facebook by a friend or rela?tive to borrow money should contact the person on another channel to confirm the request, he said, espe?cially if the bank account doesn’t match the person mak?ing the request.
When looking for a job online, people are urged to check if the company really exists before sending their ID card photocopy and bank account information.
“Beware of people offering electronic or brand name goods at low prices, like a 60 per cent discount, as they could collect money without sending the goods in return,” he said.
He added that using public WiFi connections is less risky as money transaction applications won’t allow access if the request is made via free Internet connec?tions and the system would ask for personal informa?tion for confirmation.