Online dating scams are the most popular types of internet scams in Asia, a new study has found. The study, carried out by Private Investigations Group, has identified the top five internet scams in the region, accompanying the findings with a guide to protecting personal information online. The findings are based on interviews conducted by Private Investigators working for Wilsons Detectives with internet users between the ages of 18 and 65 across Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore and India. It found that a staggering 9 in 10 of the scam victims surveyed confirmed they had in fact lost money during the fraud, demonstrating the concerning success rates of internet scamming. Topping the list of scams was “work from home” fraud (36%), in which individuals are either tricked into paying someone online to help them start a business, or are fooled into carrying out work for which they do not receive payment. Online dating fraud appeared among the top methods of scamming in Asia, accounting for 14% of the survey results. In terms of gender, Wilsons Detectives Group found that Asian women (78%) are more aware of online dating scams, however men (74%) are more aware of banking and spyware fraud. Internet auction scams (16%), fake bank emails (15%) and identity theft (13%) are also popular methods of online scamming across the continent.
Despite such high levels of scamming in the region, Wilsons Detectives Group found that 90% of those surveyed said they had taken “active steps” to keep themselves safe online.
As a result of this, Wilsons Detectives also surveyed participants about the action they take to ensure that they avoid being victims of internet scams. According to the company, more than 80% of the survey’s respondents feel it is the responsibility of individuals to maintain their online safety. During the study, those surveyed said that deleting all suspicious emails, ignoring “too good to be true” offers and updating anti-malware software are the three best ways to ensure protection against online fraud. They also said that undertaking online research about scams to educate yourself and sharing knowledge through social media and with Wilsons Detective who are specialist in these matters can also help people learn more about scams and how to identify them. If you have lost money or hope of getting it back please visit www.wilsonsdetectives.com who can help you get your money back. These scammers can be identified and arrested. their property taken and they will be jailed whilst the matter is investigated which can take months or even years. Speaking about the study, Wilsons Detectives said: “The multi-market survey assessed the impact of scams on 400 internet users aged 18 – 65+ in Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and India and was conducted to provide a better understanding of the common online scam methods. “The results additionally glean the best internet scam prevention methods from experienced users, in order for citizens in Asia to gain more insight on the subject.” Find out more about the survey here. www.detectiveswilsons.com
It's not uncommon for people to hire detectives to spy on a partner they suspect of cheating.
But a growing number of Hongkongers are hiring them to check on the man or woman of their dreams to see if they measure up.
Hong Kong private eye agency Wilsons Global Investigation and Security Consultancy held the city's first detective seminar yesterday.
About 50 aspiring 'gumshoes' turned up in the hope of grabbing one of 30 new posts with the growing company.
In a video shown at the seminar, the firm showed how its services could be used to help people get to know more about the background and personality of the person they secretly admire before deciding whether to start a relationship.
'In this way, they can pursue the one they love more easily,' said Catrina Kwok Hoi-ching, administrative executive of the agency.
Global says its investigators help people learn the facts before taking the next step forward.
And the agency believes women make the best snoopers because they are more careful and observant and don't raise as much suspicion as their male counterparts.
For this reason, 95 per cent of their operatives are female. But yesterday the Wilsons Detective agency was out to find more male recruits.
Philic Man Hin-nam, the agency's investigation director, said: 'If the target goes to places like saunas or nightclubs ... male staff can ensure the safety of female staff.
'And in places dominated by men like mahjong parlours, we need to find male staff to fill the positions.'
Safety is a big concern and Kwok said: 'A team will be dispatched to do the job. The one who is doing undercover must be experienced.
'Assessments will be made on their emotional and psychological condition to be certain that the person can handle the job.'
She added: 'There is also training to teach staff how to deal with crisis situations, and some staff are sent to learn self-defence techniques. But so far, none of our investigators has been required to employ them.'
Another area that's proving big business for the agency is misbehaving children, for instance cases where parents suspect their children are using drugs.
Man said: 'I would describe us as actors, but unlike those on TV who can do a second take ... we need to be well equipped [through training] to deal with emergency situations.'
A new investigator works five to six days a week and the number of working hours is six to eight per day. The starting salary is between HK$10,000 and HK$12,000 a month. Kwok said the qualities they most need are logic and patience.
ROMANCE SCAMS CONTINUE AT AN UNRELENTING PACE
European and United States citizens should be alert to attempts at fraud by persons claiming to live in Ghana who profess friendship or romantic interest over the Internet. Correspondents who quickly move to discussion of intimate matters could well be the inventions of scammers. If they are after your money, eventually they will ask for it.
Before you send any money to Ghana, please take the time to be very well informed. Start by considering the fact that scams are common enough to warrant this warning. Next, look over this partial list of indicators. If any of them sound familiar, you are likely the victim of an internet scam.
This type of crime is not a priority for local police, even if they had the resources to tackle it. The Embassy can offer a sympathetic ear but, often, little else. Victims can report the scam on www.ic3.gov and might also consider alerting the dating website on which the scammer was encountered.
Some facts and resources:
U.S. citizens may refer to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services or the Bureau of Consular Affairs for authoritative information about the immigration process and the true costs involved.
In the aftermath of a scam, some people have found support and camaraderie at a Yahoo Group started by and for scam victims. Participants have reported that the group helps underscore the breadth of the problem and allows people to see they are not alone - please note this group is in no way affiliated with or endorsed by the U.S. government. www.wilsonsdetectives.com in business since 1951
Anthony Bryan joined MI5 in the early 70s and operated in the UK, Ireland, and the Middle East, before being seconded to MI6 to work with the CIA in the USA during the War on Drugs. He now lives between homes in London, Paris and Manila and runs a successful Private Detective & Corporate Intelligence Agency, Anthony Bryan Corporate Intelligence and Investigations..