LAST_UPDATESun, 20 May 2018 4pm

Man Received Text To Pay RM61K Or His Family Will Be Kidnapped, What He Did Next

Pic: FacebookPic: Facebook

"I have all the details! If tonight you never banking 20K into this acc, i will kidnap your family!!

"Don't believe? You can try challenge!! After banking call and let me know!! Final warning!!"

What would you do if you suddenly received this message on your mobile phone?

A Singaporean man found himself in exactly this position recently and instead of panicking, he proceeded to analyse the message thoroughly.

First of all, he noticed that the threat sent by Whatsapp was from a number with a dialling code of +91 which indicates it originates from India. This raises the question as to how someone in India can physically threaten his family in Singapore?

However, the 'threat' was accompanied by a photo of a man and identification, providing a name, a Singaporean Identification Card number, a Singaporean mobile phone number and a bank account number.

Wang, the recipient of the message apparently found the threat suspicious and decided to share it with the public as a cautionary tale.

He shared his story to local Singaporean news blog, Stomp including the offending WhatsApp message with the message, "I hope to warn others about this scam/spam."

Wang's story resonated with netizens who now find themselves navigating a minefield of fake messages sent by email and text or even through social media channels from scammers.

One reader urged Wang to report to the police and shared a similar unpleasant experience.

Pic: FacebookPic: Facebook

Others thanked Wang for helping warn others while as usual, a joker in the midst found a way to make a humourous point although scammers inpersonating as kidnappers is no laughing matter today.

 Pic: FacebookPic: Facebook

In our borderless world today, scammers can target any unsuspecting individual anywhere in the world. The US Federal Trade Commission recently published an advisory warning people to be on alert for scammers impersonating as kidnappers.

"Recently, reports of the virtual child kidnapping imposter scam have resurfaced. The scam begins with a call from someone claiming to have kidnapped a child in your family. You may even hear sounds of a child in distress in the background.

"The scammer demands money immediately, often wanting money sent through a wire transfer service or by prepaid card. The scammer may even insist that you keep the call a secret and not alert the police.

"If you get a call like this, resist the urge to send money immediately, no matter how dramatic the story.

"These scammers are good at pressuring you to send money before you have time to think. How do they know your information? Scammers will search the internet and social media sites to get personal informatio," the FTC statement urged those who received such threats to be alert and not fall for such scams.

- mD