“If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” This was the message that the National Crime Prevention Council of Singapore would like to drive home to everyone. Online scams have been growing in prevalence and authorities have tried to arrest the rising trends with more safeguards online. However, what could individuals do to protect themselves from falling victims to scams? Join Sharda and her guest Marie Ang (Counsellor) in this episode of SG Now, as they discussed practical steps to protect oneself against scams.
Marie outlined three pointers to question oneself when navigating the online space. First, consider how much money you could save if you purchased an item online, as opposed to purchasing it from a physical retailer? Second, if you decided to go ahead with purchasing the item online, could you afford to lose the money if the listing happened to be a scam. Third, identify the emotions behind your desire to seek involvement with someone whom you have never met in person.
“Compassion. At the end of the day, I don’t think anybody asked to be scammed,” shared Marie on how one should interact with a scam victim. Marie also encouraged scam victims to self-reflect on some key questions:
- What were the motivations behind wanting more?
- What were you seeking?
- Have you paid attention to what the authorities were trying to educate the public on regarding scams?
“The greatest thing that you can do for yourself is [to] build up your self-esteem,” urged Marie. She spurred victims of love scams to not blame themselves and to speak to someone if they need to. Marie also warned that in our desire to want things done fast, we might get overly confident and careless in our online transactions.
Remember that you do not have to be a passive victim. You can play an active role in protecting yourself against scams. Watch this segment to get an idea of how love scams work.