We got hold of a new SMS scam. Actually this is not new, but this sms message has been discussed in the comments of my previous Hon Load Mo Ako text scam post. I am just distressed that after the sad events brought by typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng, these scammers are back to their scheming activities too soon.
The sms that Raven and I got looks like this:
kmsta kau, I2 na new roaming # ko nsimblock kc ung dati ko #, nga pla may ipa2dala me jang pa2kage at kunting pera bhala na kau, meron ding cp meron ka dun. Kanyakanya nem kau dun.sya bka pwd loadan nyo ako ng 300 para mkatxt ako jan. Ms na ms ko na kau. Godbless.
Sender # +639392207784
To the benefit of my non-Filipino readers I am roughly translating it in English.
How are you? This is my new roaming number. My previous number got sim blocked. By the way, I will send home some package and some money too, in the package there are some cell phone units, you can get one. Can you load me 300 pesos so that I can sent text/sms message. I miss you all so much! God Bless.
Why it is some sort of a “hit” to Filipinos? I assume that there are many Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) abroad who are fond of using a roaming sim cards (they argued that its cheaper to for their loved ones in PH to send SMS there). Electronic mobile phone loading businesses are also popular that even the neighborhood store have one (hence: the monetization vehicle is present). One of the top reasons I believe is that some Filipinos are so trusting and many pinoys are just not informed that such schemes exist, so this is some personal advocacy of mine to expose known SMS scam in this blog.
My advise is simple: Be paranoid. Do not trust unknown numbers sending sms.
Spiderham also received some variant of the scam, you can find his post and advise in his Scams 101: New SMS scam uncovered
I would like to share a comment of a reader that was recently victimized:
Submitted by HUNNY_bunny on 2009/10/11 at 4:22pm
Hi..nakakahiya man but unfortunately, ako yata ang pinakalatest victim ng scam na to.actually i want to keep it na lang sana to myself kasi feeling ko ang tanga ko talaga. gaya ng mga kwento nyo, i received a text last thursday night (October 8, 2009), saying na “ETO YUNG NEW ROAMING NUMBER KO, NAGPALIT AKO NG NUMBER KSI LAGENG WALANG SIGNAL YUNGG DATI KONG NUMBER, MAY PADALA KONG PACKAGE WITH CELLPHONE AND MONEY NEXT WEEK, ANTAYIN NYO HA..TNX AND MISS YOU ALL”..pero walang name kung sino sya, so i assume na sya yung pamangkin ko n nsa somewhere in middle east.so I txtd back “sean kaw b yan?” and sbi nya “yes ako nga to”.so nagtiwala na ko kasi super close talga kmi nung pamangkin ko tsaka sobrang thankful ako sa kanya kasi lage syang nagpapadala ng mga gamit for may baby and lage syang nagttx sa kin.then after a couple of txt nag request sya n pa loadan ko sya ng 300, niloadan ko naman ksi talgang laht ng request ng pamangkin ko sinusunod ko.after ko sya maloadan, nag nag text pa ng “thank you”…then the following morning Oct.9 nagtx ulet and dun n nagsimula na mag propose ng business about prepaid cards,sabi nya nabebenta ng 1,320 yung 500 na smart en globe dun..to make the story short pinadalhan ko sya ng 500 20smart en 20globe cards via text..nang ganun kadali since i have business kseh ng prepaids cards so madami ako stocks talga.after ko masend s kanya lahat ng prepaid dun ako biglang kinutuban na baka hindi sya yung pamangkin ko..so tinawagan ko yung pamangkin ko sa landline nya sa abroad en BOOOOM! yun na hindi nga sya yung katx ko!grabe para kong hihimatayin talga!!!kasi naloko ko ng ganun kadali, hindi na ko nag isip!!!nasilaw kasi ko sa laki ng kikitain na halos triple ang tubo, kya parang di na ko nag isip and na excite ako agad…ayun almost 20k ang nawala sa kin..eto yung number nung ngtxt sa kin:
0917xxxyyzz (number verification under process)
May last text sa kanya is sabi ko masaya ka na ngayon kasi nakaloko ka pero siguradong may kapalit yan.
To HUNNY_bunny, thank you for sharing your story. It is really sad that you fell for the scam. I hope that the spammers will have bad karma soon. In the mean time, lets be vigilant and be aware of their modus operandi and spread the info to others.
To the readers of this blog: Let’s share this knowledge on sms scam to others (especially to our not-so-techie-friendly folks, friends, family, relatives and so on).
If you receive similar text or sms scam, feel free to leave a message here.
If you have blog post discussing the sms scam experience, feel free to post the link here too.