Last week, I was invited to the event of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. It is the regional launch or mounting of AlertoAko exhibit, an activity that aims to raise awareness against financial frauds and scams.
I saw this as an important advocacy because I remembered that I received text scams countless times already. Good thing that I just ignore what I received because I know that it is scam. What worried me is those innocent people who are new to these things. Think how could it be a loss to them once they will become a victim.
The article below is my article written for and published in Mindanao Daily News on its October 23, 2015 issue. Please take time to read.
BSP warns public against financial scams
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas conducted in Cagayan de Oro City the fourth leg of ‘AlertAko,’ a proactive exhibit on Financial Consumer Protection Advisories, last October 20-22 at Centrio Mall Activity Center. This activity primarily aims to highlight BSP advisories on how to detect, avoid and protect oneself against financial fraud and scams.
Atty. Prudence Angelita A. Kasala, Director of Financial Consumer Protection Department under BSP said that the coming up of this campaign is to give warning signs to the public for protection and encourage them to make sound financial decisions, especially that there are several people who fall easily to the trick.
According to BSP, there are different kinds of fraud and scam. The common one is the text scam where a mobile phone user receives fraudulent text messages stating that his mobile number won in a raffle contest conducted either a government institution or popular game show. In claiming the prize then, the victim is required to transmit money to a designated bank account or through a remittance company, or send prepaid cellphone load to the scammer’s prepaid mobile numbers.
Kasala said that this is very alarming for there are a lot of Filipinos who engage in text messaging, given the fact that Philippines has been tagged as the Texting Capital of the World.
Other forms of scams include credit card and ATM skimming where an illegal copying of information is done, from the magnetic strip of the card through a skimming device. There is also budol-budol scam in which the scammer will attract victim’s trust through offering him bundles of fake money, then ask for his important things in exchange. Dugo-dugo scam also exist. In here, victim receives a call from someone that a loved one has been kidnapped or has been hurt and will tell him to make money transfer. There are also other scamming techniques such as ponzi or pyramiding scheme, spurious investments, identity theft, phishing, spoofing, and nigerian scams. These are harmful scamming techniques that BSP wants to aware Filipinos, mainly through this exhibit.
Moreover, ‘AlertoAko’ also features interactive games and activities, audio visual presentations on financial products, warning signs and consumer protection.
The BSP will put up the exhibit across different parts of the country to disseminate the information, educate financial consumers and remind them to be vigilant against financial fraud and scams.