As the holiday season approaches, the temptation to shop online intensifies, but it's also a time when scammers prey on unsuspecting buyers.
Stories of strangers getting scammed online are becoming common these days—some receive the wrong items, others don't get the package at all, and some, unfortunately, fall prey to text scams. Despite the existence of the SIM registration law, the Philippines still has the highest e-shopping scam rate in Asia.
This was according to a survey, 2023 Asia Scam Report, by the Cybercrime Investigation and Coordinating Center (CICC). It said that the Philippines is the highest in that category among 11 Asian economies with a rate of 35.9%.
The survey, which was released at the 1st Anti-Scam Asia Summit in Taipei on Nov. 23, was collected from 20,000 respondents across 11 economies in Asia – China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.
Filipino online shoppers are particularly vulnerable to scams, with nearly 25% responding too quickly to scammers' demands and over 20% taking risks despite uncertainty. It also said that shoppers sometimes get enticed with incentives or get duped by their relatives.
The report also revealed that SMS message is the most popular channel for scammers in the Philippines with 80.8%, while Facebook (72.3%) is the top digital platform that aggregates the risk of getting scammed.
Other prevalent scams include identity theft, investment scams, government or bank impersonation, fake job offers, lottery scams, family or relative impersonation, fraudulent bill payment requests, and charity scams.