Impersonation of NSRC Officers: ABM and AIBIM Urge Public to Be Cautious

Impersonation of NSRC Officers: ABM and AIBIM Urge Public to Be Cautious

KUALA LUMPUR: The Association of Banks in Malaysia (ABM) and the Association of Islamic Banking and Financial Institutions Malaysia (AIBIM) are urging the public to be cautious of scammers impersonating officers from the National Scam Response Centre (NSRC). In a joint statement today, ABM and AIBIM highlighted the increasing number of fraud cases targeting bank customers.
The statement advises customers to immediately hang up if they receive a call from someone claiming to be an NSRC officer, as the NSRC only receives calls from the public and does not make outbound calls to individuals.

The modus operandi of these scams was outlined: scammers impersonate NSRC officers and attempt to frighten victims by claiming their personal information, such as their identity card number or mobile phone number, is linked to illegal activities or fraud.

The scam begins when the victim receives a call from an unknown number claiming to be from the NSRC. The scammer then informs the victim that their identity or personal details have been used in criminal activities like money laundering and ‘account mule’ transactions.

These syndicates employ lengthy “interrogation” tactics, mimicking real investigations to convince victims, involving repeated phone calls over extended periods.

Eventually, after gaining the victim’s trust, the scammer requests the victim to leave their debit/ATM card at a specified location. This allows the scammer to access the victim’s online banking account to make unauthorized transfers and bill payments, as well as to withdraw cash from ATMs using the victim’s bank card.

If the victim does not have existing online banking facilities, the scammer can register on their behalf.

The statement also warns the public to be cautious of scammers impersonating officers from enforcement agencies and regulatory bodies such as Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) and the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM), who use intimidation tactics to manipulate victims into transferring money from their bank accounts.

The banking associations remind customers that banks will never request sensitive information such as credit or debit card numbers, card verification values (CVV), online banking usernames, and one-time passwords (OTPs) or transaction authorization codes (TACs).

“Customers are advised not to click on links from unknown numbers, download apps from links in messaging apps like Telegram and WhatsApp, share online banking usernames and passwords with anyone, or respond to calls or messages from unknown mobile numbers. “Customers who have fallen victim to scams should immediately contact the NSRC at 997 or their bank’s customer service hotline, which operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for assistance,” the statement added.

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