In late October, someone claiming to be a student in a local university started chatting with him.John said: "She looked so innocent and decent (in the We Chat display picture), I never expected it to be a scam." After befriending him for eight days, the student told him she needed him to help buy i Tunes gift cards for her studies.The scams can also include the planting of sophisticated software on computers that sucks out all personal information. SMISHING So-called "smishing", or SMS plus "phishing", is a variant that thrives on the rising popularity of smartphones.
Another reason for concern: The number of online scams is on the rise.
Police said commercial crimes increased by 1,387 cases in the first six months of this year compared with the same period in 2014.
A serial number on the back of the i Tunes card will let a user download music, movies, games or apps, according to the card's value.
She also told him she would meet him at 10pm near his place, as long as he bought the card for her.
Credit-for-sex scam cases jumped from five between July and September last year to 285 for the same period this year. Between July and December last year, there were 66 credit-for-sex scam cases.
In the first six months of this year, there were 640."In this version, the ladies are portrayed to be from the Philippines and victims are asked to buy credits from a new platform, Money Online, or remit money to Philippines via Western Union and Moneygram." A police spokesman said the authorities are concerned because this new trend not only involves new syndicates using similar tactics as those responsible for credit-for-sex scams, but also shows that there are different syndicates in diverse regions looking for victims here.He said the new scam differed from those involving victims making advance payments to fraudsters for the purchase of goods, such as IT gadgets, phones or bicycles that are advertised on online portals.Realising it was a scam, he made a police report at 3am.John said: "I feel so stupid to have fallen into the trap.Altogether, John bought nine cards, hoping he would finally meet her.