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Athena Dynamics Young Writers Series Article #3: E-Commerce Scams

12/04/20212021 Apr 12
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Cybersecurity Young Writers Series: E-Commerce Scams

Author: Glenn Soh, Business Development Intern, Athena Dynamics
Copyright © Feb 2021 All Rights Reserved Athena Dynamics Pte Ltd

Advisory Editor: Nyan Tun Zaw, VP of Business Development, Athena Dynamics

E-Commerce Satistics

Introduction to E-Commerce Scams

Scams are ubiquitous – crawling and creeping over every corner of the internet, just waiting for the opportune time to strike.

According to the above report from Statista, E-commerce scams are the most common types in Singapore. With the prevalence of online shopping, most people wouldn’t think twice before keying in their personal information such as credit card numbers when attempting to purchase something online

In general, the term ‘E-commerce scam’ doesn’t definitively refer to a specific scam, but rather an umbrella of cons involving the use of fake online commercial platforms that are used to steal your personal information or make unauthorised purchases. 

In general, scammers target old 

Some examples include the following: 

1) Fake Website
2) Email Phishing 
3) Missing Product Scam

1. Fake Website Scam

Real Website

Source: https://www.ica.gov.sg/news-and-publications/media-releases/media-release/public-advisory-on-fake-ica-website

Fake Website

Source: https://www.ica.gov.sg/news-and-publications/media-releases/media-release/public-advisory-on-fake-ica-website

What Happens During A Fake Website Scam

Scammers try to replicate legitimate E-commerce websites in order to steal your personal information. 

Personal information includes your full name, address, NRIC, credit card number, and mobile phone number. 

Using these information, scammers can make unathorised purchases or register cards under your name.

How To Tell If A Website Is Fake?

  1. For official websites, there should be a lock icon on the top left 
  2. Double check the website URL 
  3. Look out for grammatical errors

2. Phishing E-commerce Emails

Source: https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/singpost-warns-against-fake-lucky-draw-messages-from-scammers

How To Detect A Phishing E-Commerce Email

  1. Emails / Text with fishy URL / URL that requires personal information
  2. ‘Winning’ something you have no memory of participating 
  3. Sender number and ID can be spoofed, don’t trust it

3. Missing Product Scam

Source: https://cna-sg-res.cloudinary.com/image/upload/q_auto,f_auto/image/10929430/16×9/670/377/3a601583174a268b8459dc15e6cfbb8d/AP/bruno-mars–uss-tickets-scam.jpg

What happens during a missing product scam?

Scammers list tickets / items usually for attractive prices. However, after payment, the item is never delivered. In the case of event tickets, the tickets may have been already used or merely a fake.

How To Prevent Getting Scammed?

1. Avoid paying before receiving goods. 
2. If using a platform, try to use their middleman system (ie, Carousell Protect) 
3. Check their profile’s reviews
4. If prices seem to good to be true, it likely is a scam

What If You’ve Already Been Scammed?

  1. Contact your bank and try to cancel the transfer 
  2. Inform the police or relevant authorities 
  3. Report the seller / Contact the admins of the platform

For more information about scam prevention, do contact us using the button below or check out our Athena Dynamics Academy page here.

Biographies

Glenn Soh is an intern in the Business Development Team in Athena Dynamics Pte Ltd, which is a subsidiary of BH Global Corporation Ltd, an SGX mainboard listed company. 

Nyan Tun Zaw is the VP of Business Development at Athena Dynamics Pte Ltd, which is a subsidiary of BH Global Corporation Ltd, an SGX mainboard listed company.

With a wide range of background in cybersecurity, software development, web development as well as networking, Zaw has in-depth experiences in deploying security solutions for several highly confidential government and critical infrastructure projects, particularly in the CDR/CDNR field as a technical lead. His interest mainly lies in Cybersecurity and AIML.

Zaw holds a Bachelor of Business Management, with double majors in Finance and Information Systems, from Singapore Management University. He is also a holder of the Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) certificate by EC-Council.
Being a technical person who also likes sharing his experiences and opinions, Zaw has also been part of a speaking panel with global CIOs at the CIO Leaders Summit. 

Contact: [email protected]