Singapore may be known as one of the safest countries in the world, and was once described by CNBC as a city where “shops don’t even lock up”, but despite a decrease in violent and serious property crime, scams increased by 54% in 2019.
Not only were these scams more prevalent, they were costly: amounting to S$168 million in 2019, up S$23 million from 2018.
Here are tips to avoid falling victim to a costly scam.
The most common types of scams in Singapore
More than half of the reported scams in 2019 fell under the categories of e-commerce or loan scams. In many of these cases, victims are presented with an enticing “good deal”. These offers hooked them into thinking that meeting the monetary demand of the initiator is only a small price to pay for the premium deals they are about to receive. Consumers may also be tricked into scams on platforms that they know and trust. For example, 86% of e-commerce scams took place on platforms such as Carousell, Facebook, Instagram, Shopee and Lazada.
How to avoid falling for financial scams
The rise of scams may seem overwhelming, but with some prudence and due diligence, consumers can ensure that they remain unharmed from scammers. Here are a few tips for individuals that are worried about falling victim to a scam.