EDITORIAL - Online fraud

Since the coronavirus forced people into home quarantine at the start of the year, online transactions have soared......»»

Category: newsSource: philstar philstarNov 17th, 2020

Mark Villar seeks probe of cyberattacks vs. PhilHealth, other gov’t portals

A resolution was filed in the Senate on Tuesday seeking an inquiry over the recent cyber attack incidents against the government agencies in the country. The filing of Senate Resolution 811 by Senator Mark Villar stemmed from the recent hacking of the “Medusa ransomware” group of the state health insurer Philippine Health Insurance Corporation or PhilHealth’s online portal. The hackers have asked $300,000 or roughly P17 million in exchange for the stolen data for PhilHealth. It also threatened the government that it would publicly expose the entirety of the hacked PhilHealth data if the ransom was not paid. Villar said the threat would compromise the confidential information of Filipinos, including names, addresses, contact information, medical records as well as internal memorandums of the agency. Ransomware is a kind of malicious software that encrypts files in a device or system with access to a computer that is being blocked by hackers. To regain access to the hacked site, cybercriminals demand a ransom. Villar condemned the cyber attack incident against the PhilHealth, saying: “It is not only a huge case of information theft but an extensive attack against public health and welfare.” “These attacks compromise the medical information of the members of PhilHealth,” he added. The resolution targets to tackle the increasing number of cyber attacks, not only with PhilHealth's case but also the cases of other government agencies that were subjected to hacking. “It is high time that we strengthen our cyberspace security as we are dealing with private and delicate information that could endanger, not just of one institution, but of the general Filipino public," Villar stressed. “The regulation of cyberspace is timely and relevant, considering the increasing cases of cyber attacks on government agencies and the cases of online fraud against consumers,” he added. Earlier this week, PhilHealth said it would not pay the ransom and it has shut down its online systems “to assess the impact of the cyberattack." Philhealth also opted for manual processing of the member benefits following the hacking incident. Meanwhile, the Department of Information and Communications Technology said the cyber hackers already uploaded some PhilHealth information and documents to the dark web, with a countdown of days before the state insurer should pay ransom. DICT clarified the PhilHealth database was not compromised. The post Mark Villar seeks probe of cyberattacks vs. PhilHealth, other gov’t portals appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 26th, 2023

Fraud ring targets global crypto pools

Online scammers have stolen more than $1 million from so-called cryptocurrency liquidity pools recently,  according to cybersecurity system provider Sophos. Sophos released findings on a pig butchering operation through the use of fake trading pools of cryptocurrency. The report, “Latest Evolution of ‘Pig Butchering’ Scam Lures Victim in Fake Mining Scheme,” details the story of one of the scammed victims in the pools, named Frank, and how he lost $22,000 in one week after “someone” pretending to be “Vivian” on the dating app MeetMe contacted him. After Sophos X-Ops investigated Frank’s story, the team uncovered a total of 14 domains associated with the scam operation, as well as dozens of nearly identical fraud sites that, together, netted one “ring” of pig butcherers more than $1 million in three months. The scam takes advantage of the largely unregulated world of decentralized finance, or DeFI, cryptocurrency trading applications. These applications create “liquidity pools” of various types of cryptocurrencies that users can then access for trades. Those who participate in the pool receive a percentage of any fee paid when a trade is made, creating an enticing return on investment. To join a pool, participants sign an online smart contract that gives another account, typically the operators of the pool, permission to access participants’ wallets to facilitate trades. Fake pools, which pig butcherers are increasingly utilizing to siphon funds from targets, operate in much the same way.   Liquidity pools cleaned up However, unlike legitimate pools, at some point these scammers “pull the rug” and empty the entire liquidity pool for themselves. “When we first discovered these fake liquidity pools, it was rather primitive and still developing. Now, we’re seeing sha zhu pan scammers taking this particular brand of cryptocurrency fraud and seamlessly integrating it into their existing set of tactics, such as luring targets over dating apps,” according to Sean Gallagher, principal threat researcher, Sophos. Very few understand how legitimate cryptocurrency trading works, so it’s easy for these scammers to con their targets. “There are even toolkits now for this sort of scam, making it simple for different pig butchering operations to add this type of crypto fraud to their arsenal. While last year, Sophos tracked dozens of these fraudulent ‘liquidity pool’ sites, now we’re seeing more than 500,” Gallagher said. Sophos X-Ops first learned of this liquidity mining operation from a victim named Frank. Frank had connected on the dating app MeetMe with a scammer hiding behind the persona of Vivian, a German woman supposedly living in Washington, D.C. for work. For weeks, Frank chatted with Vivian, who mixed her romantic promises with persistent attempts to convince Frank to invest in crypto. Eventually, Frank opened a Trust Wallet account (a legitimate app for converting dollars to cryptocurrency) and connected to the link to the liquidity pool site Vivian recommended. In reality, the pool site was fraudulent and utilized the brand of Allnodes, an established decentralized finance platform provider, as a cover. Between 31 May and 5 June, Frank invested $22,000 in the scheme. Just three days later, the scammers emptied Frank’s digital wallet. Frank, looking to recover his money, turned to Vivian, who advised him to invest even more in the pool to recover his funds and reap the “rewards.” While waiting for his bank to authorize a money transfer to Coinbase, Frank started researching what was going on and came across an article on liquidity mining from Sophos. At this point, Frank reached out to Gallagher for help. Even after Gallagher instructed Frank to block Vivian, she eventually found him on Telegram and continued her attempts to entice him into “continuing their investment,” going so far as to send a lengthy, emotional letter that was very likely created by a generative AI app. “What makes these sorts of scams particularly tricky is that they don’t require any malware to be installed on a victim’s device. They don’t even involve a fake app, like some of those we’ve encountered in other CryptoRom scams. This entire fake liquidity pool was run through the legitimate Trust Wallet app.” At one point, Frank even tried to contact Trust Wallet’s support to recover his money, but he connected with a fake support contact from the fraudulent liquidity pool site. There is no regulation of these pools, legitimate or otherwise, on these crypto apps. These scams succeed solely through social engineering, and the scammers are persistent. Vivian continued trying to contact Frank for weeks after he blocked her on WhatsApp. “The only way to stay safe from these scams is to be vigilant and know that they exist and how they operate. That is why Frank wanted to share his story. Users need be wary of anyone they have no connection with reaching out to them suddenly via any dating app or social media platform, particularly if the ‘person’ reaching out wants to move the conversation to a platform like WhatsApp and then discusses investing in cryptocurrency,” Gallagher said. Sophos has shared its data on this case with Chainalysis and Coinbase, as well as other threat intelligence professionals in the cryptocurrency space, all of whom continue to investigate. “People who believe they may be a victim of pig butchering or liquidity mining fraud are free to reach out to Sophos. They should also reach out to their local law enforcement for assistance,” Gallagher advised. The post Fraud ring targets global crypto pools appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 25th, 2023

Buy Now, Pay Later scheme revenue to reach $1.92 B

Revenues from online shopping applications offering the “buy now, pay later” scheme are forecasted to reach $1.92 billion by the end of the year because of the good financial landscape in the Philippines, software developer Appdome said. In fact, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, account ownership among Filipinos stood at 56 percent at end-2021. According to Jan Sysmans, Mobile App Security Evangelist at Appdome, though efforts are underway to increase this to 70 percent by the end of this year, a significant portion of the population remains underbanked or unbanked. However, this success can only be made possible by developers keeping their apps secure from all manner of threats plaguing the mobile landscape.   Customer protection prioritized “In response to the changing threat landscape, Buy Now Pay Later app providers must prioritize customer protection. They can do this by automating protections and embedding defense into the developmental lifecycle,” he said. BNPL apps offer mobile shoppers a financial installment service that allows them to delay paying the full price. Micro-credit loans are used to acquire items at a reduced cost, including vacation trips, electronics, and exercise equipment. The remaining amount will then be settled at an agreed-upon date. Currently, the Philippines boasts numerous BNPL apps for users to choose from. These include TendoPay, LazPayLater, Grab PayLater, UnaPay, BillEase, Cashalo, Plentina, Atome and GCredit.   Threats Sysmans said BNPL apps’ rising popularity can be attributed to their easy application and credit acquisition processes. However, he said these features have also attracted opportunistic cybercriminals looking to prey on new victims and drain their funds for their own nefarious purposes. Without proper security, users will lose faith in BNPL apps and turn to other competing services that can prioritize their safety. Sysmans said there are five tactics for which BNPL app makers need to be prepared, namely weaponizing BNPL apps for synthetic fraud, overlay and keylogging tactics, data and application programming interface breaches, trojan apps, and hacking and fraudster research. “Hackers understand that one doesn’t simply attack their targets head-on. They first need to be familiar with the app’s environment and features. The best way to do that is by interacting with the primary workflows, such as purchases. Developers can stay on top of this tactic by obfuscating their app’s coding and utilizing solutions that can block the use of Dynamic Binary Instrumentation toolkits like Frida,” he said.   Security With more customers adopting BNPL apps to pay for their goods, the need to prioritize security becomes greater than ever. “This is why app makers need to embrace a shift-left mindset that pushes the integration of protection features at the earliest stages of development. And with the mobile security solutions mentioned above, they can continue to build trustworthy experiences, leading to greater user loyalty,” he said. “Appdome empowers app developers with tools and capabilities to seamlessly integrate robust mobile cyber defense measures into their apps without disrupting the development cycle or compromising user experiences. Through Appdome’s advanced mobile malware protection, BNPL app providers can safeguard their users’ data from cyber threats, enhancing trust and fostering loyalty,” he added. The post Buy Now, Pay Later scheme revenue to reach $1.92 B appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 23rd, 2023

Mark Villar pushes e-commerce protection vs. online scams

Senator Mark Villar on Wednesday stressed the need to legislate a measure that would provide safety nets to those involved in electronic commerce. Villar is the primary sponsor of Senate Bill 1846, also known as the Internet Transactions Act of 2023, which was approved by the Senate in its second reading following the period of individual amendments in the plenary session. "Through our successful collaboration with other senators, the amendments presented and adopted to the Internet Transactions Act ensure the utmost safeguard for both the consumers and merchants engaged in digital transactions,” Villar said. SB 1846 highlights the regulation of e-commerce transactions between digital platforms or e-marketplaces and consumers. The proposed measure also outlines the subsidiary liability of the online merchant or retailer, should it fail to fulfill its responsibilities, as laid down by the bill, to aggrieved consumers. Once enacted, Villar said the measure would protect e-commerce users and retailers against online scams. He said the SB 1846 “will be extremely helpful” not just for the regulation of e-commerce transactions but also for the welfare of consumers. "The success of the recent session on the amendments of the bill shows the dedication of our senators in ensuring that it passes into law. Hopefully, we see through the process successfully. Ito ay magiging malaking tulong para sa mga consumers, lalo na sa mga biktima ng mga e-commerce scams and fraud transactions,” Villar stressed. The bill is pending the approval of the Senate in its third and final reading. Once signed into law by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., Villar said the measure will become the “regulatory framework on the legal repercussions of online scams and it will provide safety measures for both consumers and merchants participating in digital transactions.” The post Mark Villar pushes e-commerce protection vs. online scams appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 20th, 2023

Phl phishing attacks highest in SE Asia, linked to 2% loss in GDP

  At least two percent of the global Gross Domestic Product was lost due to increasing cases of online fraud, phishing, and scams, Senator Mark Villar said Monday. Villar, presiding over the hearing by the Senate Committee on Banks, Financial and Institutions and Currencies, lamented that the proliferation of online scams threatened not only the potential of online banking but also the stability of the banking system and the hard-earned money of the Filipino people. “While digitalization and the widespread use of digital finance opened opportunities for the banking sector, it is also apparent that opportunists also devise new methods to take advantage of this emerging financial market,” Villar said. While there’s an increasing number of Filipinos using online payment platforms, Villar noted that crimes related to digital financial transactions are also growing. “A significant number of Filipinos have been targeted by digital fraud attempts and a portion of them eventually fall victim to it,” he said. The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said it has received more complaints regarding online banking transactions compared to those related to using Automated Teller Machines and credit cards, among others. In fact, the Anti-Money Laundering Council reported a rise in suspicious transactions in 2020 comprising acts of phishing, skimming, and transactions related to money mules. The Security Exchange Commission likewise noted a significant rise in complaints related to online fraud committed by online lending platforms. Villar said as these scammers take advantage of their victims, they also rattle their victims' trust in the country’s banking and financial institutions. “Trust, being the currency of the banking system, must be well-earned. Given the proliferation of online fraudsters, it is imperative that we strengthen our efforts to keep scammers at bay,” he added. Among the existing laws aimed at fighting online bank fraud include Republic Act 11765 or Financial Products and Services Consumer Protection Act; the RA 11934 or Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) Registration Act; and RA 10175 or Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012. Villa said as criminal elements adapt to legislation to perpetuate fraud, hence, “there is a need to legislate new laws to keep them off track” such as the proposed Anti-Financial Account Scamming Act. “This measure will reinforce and earn back the public’s trust in our financial institutions,” he said. The number of phishing attacks in the Philippines during the first half of 2022 already surpassed the number of attacks at over 1.8 million detected compared to 1.34 million attacks during the entire year of 2021. Villar described the spiking cases of online scams as “extremely concerning.” This, as data from Kaspersky Security Network revealed that cases of financial phishing attempts in the Philippines from February to April 2022 were highest in Southeast Asia. Villar emphasized that the Anti-Financial Account Scamming Act or AFASA will evidently deal with cases of online fraud and will provide a regulatory framework that penalizes scammers as well as entails safeguard measures to protect Filipinos and their financial accounts. “Because of the lack of a regulatory framework that penalizes these scammers, there are and there will be more victims in the foreseeable future,” he added. AMLC executive director, Matthew David, said they required banks and payment operators to maintain the 'Know Your Customer document' for their system and store a system that could verify the identity of the clients, including the bank account owners. “They are required to do some verification in order to make sure the true identity of the customers,” David added. The public committee hearing was followed by an Executive Session due to the confidentiality and sensitivity of the issues and information that will be discussed. Villar said the executive session was conducted to ensure that law enforcement measures being undertaken to apprehend and prosecute scammers will not be disrupted. The post Phl phishing attacks highest in SE Asia, linked to 2% loss in GDP appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 18th, 2023

SIM cards from POGOs contain P1 billion in e-wallets

Around 28,000 Subscriber Identity Module cards confiscated from Philippine offshore gaming operators in Pasay City last month were used to siphon P1 billion from the e-wallets of online fraud victims, according to the Department of Information and Communications Technology......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsSep 14th, 2023

Enhanced law enforcement key vs online fraud, says telco exec

Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) registration establishes only the ownership of the SIM cards for purposes of readily determining accountability when electronic fraudsters use them to commit cybercrimes......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsSep 12th, 2023

Enhanced law enforcement key vs online fraud, says telco official

Subscriber Identity Module registration establishes only the ownership of the SIM cards for purposes of readily determining accountability when electronic fraudsters use them to commit cybercrimes. “And it is only the first step towards an intricate and highly technical approaches which aimed at curbing online scams,” said Atty. Froilan Castelo, Globe Group’s general counsel. Cybercrimes and other online fraud, however, are reportedly committed pervasively through the over- the-top messaging and sim cards issued by international telecom providers whose operations are reportedly beyond the control of Republic Act 11934, or SIM registration law, and other security protocols that were put in place by the local telecommunications companies. OTT messaging reportedly refers to services that transmit messages over the internet, bypassing the traditional cellular network channels. These messaging apps like Viber, WhatsApp, Telegram, Signal and WeChat reportedly allow the users to deliver text messages, multi-media messages, videos, and photos, and make voice and video calls using a wireless fidelity or internet connection rather than the usual cellular network’s messaging services. The OTT apps reportedly operate at a lesser cost yet remain an effective communication tool, especially for international messaging and calls, and can be functional even without SIM card number like the Facebook Messenger. In coping with the difficulties caused by the OTT messaging being used as an instrument in the commission of cybercrimes, Castelo said Globe is committed to fully cooperate in government’s efforts to crack down on all forms of online offenses. “Criminals will always try to find a way to circumvent the law, the reason why we are in pursuit with other stakeholders to be a step ahead of their schemes,” said Castelo. As he warned the public against selling registered SIM cards to other persons which is violative of the law, Castelo made an emphasis on the need for multi-stakeholder efforts and enhanced law enforcement drive to address the challenges confronting the government all-out campaign against online scams whose victims are reportedly hard earners. "We will actively work with the law enforcers in verifying the data on pre-registered sim cards which were confiscated during their operations, and we will readily undertake proactive measures to prevent further commission of cybercrimes," Castelo said. Following the end of the registration period for existing SIMs on July 25, 2023, and the five-day grace period on 30 July 2023, Globe has reportedly completed the deactivation of unregistered SIMs. Globe has also been pursuing a sustained effort against spam and scam messages through a well-established system of detection and SMS blocking. It is reportedly running a 24/7 Security Operations Center which is fortified by an investment of US$20 million for a stringent filtering infrastructure. In a statement, Globe said it maintains a ‘Stop Spam’ portal where subscribers may report spam and scam messages that they receive. It also said that Globe is ready to work with the Philippine National Police in establishing PNP’s own spam and scam reporting system where the public may lodge text or call related fraud. “As proof of its desire to be a valuable partner of the government in curbing online scams, Globe is proud to report that it is the only telco that strictly blocks all person-to-person SMS with links, a measure it introduced in September last year. With this strict blocking protocol, Globe continues to reach record high in its spam and scam SMS blocking with more than 2.2 billion from January to June 2023 alone,” Castelo said. The post Enhanced law enforcement key vs online fraud, says telco official appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 12th, 2023

Congress urged to pass tighter penalties vs digital fraud

Telco giant PLDT Inc. has thrown its full support behind measures filed in Congress pushing for heavier penalties against financial fraud in light of a resurgence in online scams......»»

Category: financeSource:  philstarRelated NewsSep 5th, 2023

Bills seek tougher rules vs scammers

Consumers will be better shielded from Internet fraud under two pending bills that seek to add teeth to agencies implementing laws on cybercrime and imposing imprisonment of individuals acting as cyber “mules.” Lawmakers recently filed House Bill 7393 or the Anti-Financial Scamming Act, and the counterpart Senate Bill 2039 or the Anti-Mule and Financial Fraud Act of 2023. The first measure penalizes person acting as a money mule or performs social engineering schemes, considered as a form of economic sabotage when carried out by a group of three or more persons. On the other hand, SB 2039 expands the punishable acts to include those who engage other persons to act as “money mules.” Likewise, phishing and account takeover are part of the prohibited acts. In both proposed bills, money mules include those who sell, buy or lend e-wallets or other financial accounts, as well as those who register e-wallets or other financial accounts using a fictitious name or stolen identity to perpetrate a crime. In a press statement on Monday, PLDT and Smart Communications president and CEO Alfredo Panlilio committed to support the legislation.   State must offer protection “PLDT and Smart will support any form of timely and relevant legislation that protects our customers. For us, consumer protection is a significant part of our overall customer experience,” Panlilio said. “Since every Internet user is vulnerable to attacks that target our identity and our finances, protection by the State is equally vital to getting more Filipinos to maximize the opportunities that the Internet can offer,” he added. Based on figures provided by the Cybercrime Investigation and Coordinating Center, online fraud incidents in Metro Manila alone rose from 1,551 in the first half of 2022 to 4,446 in the first half of 2023, representing an increase of 186 percent. A report from  the Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Commission, based on the digital forensic investigation of the SIMs confiscated in raids against scammers, unscrupulous individuals have been selling their registered pre-paid SIMs with verified e-wallet accounts for use in various cybercrime operations. The post Bills seek tougher rules vs scammers appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 4th, 2023

EDITORIAL - Digital fraud still around

When it comes to digital technology, it seems scammers and other criminals always manage to stay one step ahead of the law......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsSep 2nd, 2023

Text scams have shifted to online apps, Globe warns

Mobile giant Globe Telecom Inc. has warned that digital fraud is thriving in messaging channels and from overseas numbers, both of which are not covered by the regulations of SIM registration......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsSep 2nd, 2023

Credit card literacy revs up as use rises

The Credit Information Corporation continues its campaign for wise and safe use of credit cards as more Filipinos shift to cashless payments. CIC, along with the Credit Card Association of the Philippines, or CCAP, will hold the “Swipesmart” free webinar on 31 August on their Facebook page from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. CIC on its website announced the webinar will discuss the responsible use of credit cards to build a good credit rating for easier access to loans and cybersecurity for prevention of financial theft. CCAP executive director Alex Ilagan said cases of credit card fraud have risen by 21 percent in 2021 amid the pandemic as interactions were conducted through remote technology. During this period, Visa Philippines said more Filipinos or 52 percent preferred online credit card payments while 44 percent chose card payments at physical stores.   Rise in cards use inevitable CCAP expects more Filipinos to use credit cards as the Philippine Statistics Authority projected more income earners in the country with a 1.52 percent population growth each year and more businesses both online and physical open post-pandemic. Currently, 64 percent of the population own credit cards, CCAP reported. “As the economy continues to reopen and becomes more robust, pent-up demand for consumer goods and services will persist, feeding into the growth of the e-commerce, retail and services, travel and tourism, automotive, and housing sectors, among others,” Ilagan said. “A credit card is one way to extend your purchasing power,” he continued. Credit cards are used for small to medium purchases. For long-term and bigger purchases, banks strictly evaluate borrowers’ credit card histories submitted by the CIC as required by law. CIC shared it has obtained credit data of 41.8 million individuals as of 30 June 2023. Visit for the registration link to the webinar. The post Credit card literacy revs up as use rises appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 28th, 2023

Villar: Internet Transaction Act will protect online sellers, consumers vs fraud

Online sellers and consumers will be protected once the Senate Bill 1846 or the Internet Transaction Act of 2023 is enacted into law. This was assured by Senator Mark Villar as he defended the proposed measure during the Senate deliberation. “This is good news for online shoppers and online sellers. The bill we just defended will protect merchants and consumers against fraudulent practices in Internet transactions. It will address the pressing need to ensure that Filipinos can harness the benefits of the digital world without compromising their privacy and security,” Villar, principal author of the bill, said. The senator also said he is “firmly committed to the ideals and objectives” of the Internet Transaction Act. Under the bill, digital platforms or e-marketplaces shall be subsidiarily liable to the online merchant or retailer if it failed to perform its responsibilities as laid down in the proposed measure that caused damage to the consumer. Villar said the bill also establishes a code of conduct for all businesses involved in e-commerce in order to safeguard and advance consumer interests. “Maganda po na we discuss the concerns of our fellow senators. The purpose is to make ITA future-proof so that its application will not be limited especially sa hindi pa available na business model at this point," he added. The Senate's commitment to deliver a "well-crafted and impactful law" was highlighted during the interpellation, according to Villar. Hence, Villar remains steadfast in his commitment to advocating for its passage and effective implementation. He also underscored the importance of creating an environment “where individuals and businesses can confidently participate in the digital world, ensuring a safer and more prosperous online future for all.” “Natapos na po natin ang interpellations, we are now looking forward to the period of amendments. Hopefully, by next week masimulan na natin so we can reflect all the comments and concerns raised by our colleagues,” he further stressed. Once legislated, Villar said the Internet Transactions Act of 2023 will “prevent online scams and assure the safety” of both consumers and merchants engaged in e-commerce. The post Villar: Internet Transaction Act will protect online sellers, consumers vs fraud appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsAug 18th, 2023

Gatchalian: BI has failed to prevent foreign fugitives’ entry into POGOs

Senator Win Gatchalian on Monday said the Bureau of Immigration has failed to prevent the entry of foreign fugitives into the country, lamenting that they were able to freely engage in human trafficking activities and other criminality. He likewise called out BI for giving foreign fugitives permits to legally control Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators. He cited the recently raided Xinchuang Network Technology in Las Piñas City in June where seven foreign fugitives were found involved in criminality but were working in a legal POGO. A separate raid was also conducted in May against the CGC Technologies in Sunvalley Corporation in Pampanga, with another seven foreign fugitives found to be working as legitimate POGO workers. “Both Xinchuang and CGC were POGO-accredited service providers. How were these fugitives able to sneak out POGO licenses into our country?,” Gatchalian asked, noting that the apprehended personalities were tagged as “wanted for fraud, theft, drug trafficking activities, human trafficking, and online scamming” based on the police reports from China and Taiwan. “POGOs corrupt the system kaya maraming palusot ang nangyayari. By allowing these fugitives to enter the country, some Bureau of Immigration personnel might have also been tainted by POGOs and the individuals involved should be properly investigated," he added. Gatchalian expressed dismay about immigration officers who have been “meticulously scrutinizing” outbound Filipino travelers but have failed to halt the entry of foreign fugitives, causing an increase in POGO-related criminality in the country. The senator called anew for the stoppage of POGO operations in the country. “POGOs greatly contribute to the deterioration of peace and order in the country,” he pointed out. The post Gatchalian: BI has failed to prevent foreign fugitives’ entry into POGOs appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJul 17th, 2023

Metro cybercrime on the rise

In 2022, there were only 1,551 incidents of online scam; 570 incidents of illegal access; and 241 incidents of ATM or credit card fraud The post Metro cybercrime on the rise appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJul 9th, 2023

How to safeguard your personal information from doxing

The escalating incidence of doxing has sparked significant concern among digital rights and safety advocates, given the heightened vulnerability individuals face such as scams, online gender-based violence and identity fraud......»»

Category: financeSource:  philstarRelated NewsJul 7th, 2023

BI nets 7 fugitives

The Bureau of Immigration reported on Thursday the arrest of the seven fugitives in Las Piñas which composed of four Chinese national and three Taiwanese. BI Commissioner Norman Tansingco said that they received information that these foreign nationals were wanted fugitives. A mission order was issued against them and they were also arrested for being undesirable aliens. The four Chinese nationals were identified as Zhang Quanbao, Song Tianming, Yu Liming, and Liu Jianxin while the three Taiwanese were identified as Li Yi Liang, Huang Hsin-Chiang and Lin Yue Hong. Tansingco added that an information from authorities revealed a warrants of detention were issued against the four Chinese nationals by the China Public Security Bureau for Contract Fraud, Drug Trafficking, Telecom fraud and theft, respectively. Meanwhile, the Taoyuan and Taichung District Prosecutors’ Offices in Taiwan have issued warrants of arrest against the three Taiwanese fugitives for fraud and offenses of causing bodily harm. The seven fugitives were allegedly worked for a fraud syndicate running an online gaming hub in the Philippines. They are now detained in the BI Warden Facility in Camp Bagong Diwa, Taguig, pending for their deportation proceedings. The post BI nets 7 fugitives appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJul 6th, 2023

Russian reporter ‘savagely’ beaten in Chechnya

An award-winning Russian investigative journalist is in hospital after being badly beaten by armed assailants during a trip to Chechnya, her newspaper and a rights group said. The attack happened early on Tuesday as well-known journalist Elena Milashina and Alexander Nemov, a lawyer, were traveling from the airport. Her newspaper, Novaya Gazeta, published a video of Milashina in hospital with her head shaven and covered in a green-colored dye -- used to target Kremlin critics -- and her hands bandaged. She said the attack, which included having a gun held to her head, was linked to her "professional activity in Chechnya." Milashina has covered rights abuses in Chechnya, the Caucasus republic ruled by former warlord Ramzan Kadyrov, for years. She came to Grozny on Tuesday to attend the sentencing of Zarema Musayeva, whose husband and sons have fallen foul of the Kadyrov regime but did not make it there. "It's a sensitive case," she said, calling Musayeva a "hostage." Musayeva later was handed 5-and-a-half years on fraud charges widely seen as political revenge against her family. Milashina recounted the attack in a video shared by Novaya Gazeta: "They came, they threw out the driver, the taxi driver from the car. They jumped in, pushed our heads down, they tied my hands, put us on our knees with a gun to the head," she said. "They did everything nervously. They didn't manage to tie my hands properly." The Memorial human rights group said the pair were "savagely" beaten. She said she was taken to neighboring Ossetia for safety and the newspaper said she will go back to Moscow once a medical team examines her. Not welcome Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters during a briefing that President Vladimir Putin had been informed. "We are talking about a very serious attack that requires vigorous measures," Peskov said. Kadyrov, who has been accused of persistent rights abuses in his restive region, said in a statement online he had instructed officials to determine who was behind the attack. "The authorities began to work immediately after the announcement of the incident," the statement read. But his rights ombudsman Mansur Soltayev said Milashina was "not welcome by a large part of the public" in Chechnya. He said this was especially true during Moscow's Ukraine offensive, during which "the Chechen nation supports the efforts of the president of Russia." The media rights group Reporters Without Borders said it was "horrified by the savage attack" on Milashina. And the rights group Amnesty International urged Russia to investigate the "vicious" beating. Milashina's paper Novaya Gazeta, Russia's top independent publication, said she and Nemov were in a hospital in the Chechen capital Grozny. Novaya Gazeta in February last year said that Milashina had to leave Russia temporarily after receiving death threats from the Chechen leadership. The paper, whose chief editor Dmitry Muratov won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2021, has since 2000 seen six journalists and contributors killed, including investigative reporter Anna Politkovskaya. By focusing on rights abuses in Chechnya, Milashina has followed in the footsteps of Politkovskaya, a fierce critic of the Kremlin's policies in Chechnya, who was shot dead in 2006. Russian human rights commissioner Tatyana Moskalkova was quoted by Russian news agencies as saying that the incident "should be carefully investigated and the perpetrators brought to justice". The post Russian reporter ‘savagely’ beaten in Chechnya appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJul 4th, 2023

NY tribunal clears Bloomberry from heist

The Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court upheld on 30 May 2023 an order clearing a unit of  Bloomberry Resorts and Hotels Inc. or BRHI from the complaint of Bangladesh Bank regarding an $81-billion online bank heist. A decision and order dated 30 May 2023, received by Bloomberry in the evening of 30 May 2023, upheld the order of the Supreme Court, New York County dated 8 April 2022 which granted the motion to dismiss the Bangladesh central bank’s complaint against Bloomberry unit Solaire resort. Bloomberry Resorts Corp., and its subsidiary Bloomberry Resorts and Hotels Inc., along with Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation, and Eastern Hawaii Leisure Company, Ltd have all been accused of serious crimes, including conspiracy to commit, fraud, aiding and abetting, conspiracy to commit fraud, conversion, theft, misappropriation, and a litany of other charges.   Hackers went for $1B The suit was related to the attack on Bangladesh Bank by North Korean hackers in 2016 that resulted to the syphoning off a total of $1 billion from the bank’s accounts. The hackers attacked the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, which responded rapidly, blocking the majority of the transfers, but after letting $101 million slip through. The bank was able to retrieve $20 million of these funds, but the remaining $81 million remained unaccounted. In the probe on how the remainder of the money was used, it was found the majority of the funds were channeled through various casinos and gambling properties and used to buy gaming chips and play in junket rooms. The hackers were successful in transferring the money because the criminals specifically launched their attack during the long weekend. Since the racket took place, Bangladesh Bank has been looking to recover the missing funds, essentially accusing the defendants of not acting in good conscience when it came to examining the source of funds and flagging the matter with authorities in a timely fashion. With the latest rulings, however, it’s unlikely for Bangladesh Bank to recoup any further of the missing funds. The post NY tribunal clears Bloomberry from heist appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJun 1st, 2023