SINGAPORE – Some social media users were cheated of at least $107,000 from January to August this year, the police said on Thursday (Sept 12).

The police said they received at least 90 reports of scams involving fake Lazada and Shopee lucky draws.

Scammers contacted the victims on social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram, impersonating the victims’ friends or followers.

They would then ask the victims for their contact numbers and images of their credit or debit cards, pretending to help them to sign up for lucky draws allegedly conducted by Lazada and Shopee to win money.

After getting these details, they would ask the victims for the One-Time Password (OTP) sent to them.

The victims realised they had been cheated after they discovered unauthorised card transactions on their accounts.

The police verified that there are no such lucky draws by Lazada and Shopee.

In a separate group of cases, scammers pretended to be the victims’ friends on Facebook.

They asked victims for their mobile numbers and OTP for ride-hailing platform Grab.

After the victims provided their six-digit verification codes, they lost access to their Grab accounts, which were used by the scammers to purchase Razer Gold, a virtual credit for online games.

The police advised members of the public to protect themselves from these scams by being wary of unusual requests from strangers and their social media contacts.

They also advised people not to believe that they have won a prize, especially if they have not participated in any campaign or lucky draw.

“Always verify the authenticity of the request by contacting your friend, but do not do so through the social media platform as the account might have been taken over by scammers,” said the police.

The police added that members of the public should not give their personal information, bank account, credit or debit card details and OTP to anyone, including family and friends.

To provide information on scams, go to www.police.gov.sg/iwitness or call the police hotline on 1800-255-0000.

For more information on scam prevention, go to www.scamalert.sg or call the anti-scam helpline on 1800-722-6688.