By Connie Calipay
LEGAZPI CITY --- The Banko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) in Tuesday warned the public against frauds and scams as the holiday season approaches.
Paulette Gay Menguilla, BSP spokesperson, in an interview said that scammers are very rampant, active and noticeably numerous with the advent of the Christmas holidays.
“Be alert, vigilant and report any suspicious act to the nearest authorities or police station in your area,” Menguilla said.
Some signs of fraud and scam include having someone telling you that you have won in a lottery or a raffle that you did not actually join and that you should act immediately or else lose the opportunity.
You may also be told that you have been selected to receive a special offer, incentive or free gift then asked to pay for the shipping fee of your prize; or promised a high return without any risk or 100 percent guaranteed return of investment, among others.
The BSP gave “What to do” tips to prevent scams and frauds: Stop. Think. Be skeptical. Do not be pressured into making hasty decisions and check things out before you buy or sign anything right away; Exercise due diligence in selecting investments and the people with whom you deal with; Make sure you fully understand the investment before making the investment.
Beware of testimonials which have no way of checking; always get information in writing before you give away any money and take time to do careful research. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it’s probably false.
Check out the investment company through some independent agency to make sure it is legitimate; Never send money to pay for taxes/fees/prepaid cards on domestic/foreign text or lottery winnings, which you did not join.
Do not be fooled by the promise of large sums of money for your cooperation. Safeguard personal information; avoid disclosing personal or account details via phone; do not click on web links embedded in emails; keep an eye on your credit card after use and Stay calm. Do not immediately follow instructions coming from a stranger for any demand of money.
Menguilla added the common types of frauds and scams are: text scams; credit card and ATM skimming; Ponzi/Pyramiding Scheme; Spurious Investments; Identity theft; Phising; Spoofing; Nigerian Scams; Budol-Budol Scams, and Dugo-Dugo Scams.