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Jul 6, 2022

A Phishing Scam Targeted at Unsuspecting Belizeans

There’s a public warning being issued tonight from the financial sector about a phishing scam that’s targeting Belizeans. The fraudulent practice of sending emails purporting to be from reputable companies, in this case the local banks, in order to induce individuals to reveal personal information, such as passwords and credit card numbers is not a novel scheme. Over the years, scammers have proven themselves to be craftier and much more organized, easily deceiving persons who are out to make quick money without doing any due diligence on the so-called companies that are reaching out to them. Very recently, a social media post for an online job opportunity was flagged by the Belize Bank as part of an elaborate scheme being perpetrated by scammers operating outside of the country. This morning, News Five spoke with Chief Operations Officer Agata Ruta who explained how the swindle is being pulled off.


Agata Ruta

Agata Ruta, Chief Operations Officer, Belize Bank

“A week ago, we saw the job posting on social media advising people to start a job with very easy earnings.  You can have two hundred dollars per little transaction that you will contact for this company.  The minute you click and you accept, you are being contacted by a company from the U.S. and they ask you several questions.  They ask you for your CV, they ask you for your address, they ask you to share your banking detail, everything covered up with the easy money, that you will go and evaluate restaurants, act as a mystery shopper for them.  So this is how they are recruiting the crew, the people who are actually the victims of the crime already.  And then, once they have the network of people who have agreed and who are participating in the program.  They start to send emails to the general public, emails with a sense of urgency, saying that your account has been debited and in order to cancel the transaction [you need to] click on the specific link.  Your account has been blocked, in order to unblock [you need to] click on a specific link or button.  The minute people are doing that, their device might be compromised.  So when you click on the link, the page will appear, asking you for the different credentials: username, password, PIN, even the password to your email.  Banks never do things like that, we never ask anybody for the password to their email address.  But this is done on purpose so the email address can be compromised by the scammer and they can get into your email and they can confirm the transactions. That’s why they do the very comprehensive collection of credentials.”


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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