A Facebook user shared his personal experience on a new scam tactic. He recounted how his SingTel mobile number was strangely terminated without his consent, and this was due to a hacker trying to takeover his number. These hackers were using a scam called SimSwap.
It seems that hackers had collected his personal information through various channels, and later pretended to be him while requesting SingTel to terminate his number. The hacker may have tried to contact the victim later as he explained “The hacker can’t tell if my number was terminated, at least within the first day. Even though my number was terminated, I told the hacker it wasn’t and he believed me. The hacker seems to need the code on my end to complete the takeover? He was willing to pay me money for it haha.” The hackers transact via bitcoin so there is probably no way to trace them.
If the victim had fallen into the hackers’ trap and handed over his number, they could access his 2FA to reset all his bank and Singpass passwords. This might then be used to collect ransom from their victims?
According to the Facebook user, SingTel staff have not heard of this scam before and did not know how to react. The police officer who attended to this case mentioned this was the first case he knew about. SingTel is currently investigating this incident.
He claims that the only way to prevent this case could be to opt-in for “No Phone (or something along these lines)” which prevents anyone from modifying your contracts and plans over the phone and that customers have to go down to the physical shop to settle these changes.