The story appears on

Page A8

September 1, 2009

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Nation

Elderly, women main victims of Internet fraud

CRIMINAL gangs tricking Chinese into releasing bank account information and other personal details were having the greatest success among older people and women, police said in Beijing yesterday.

A crackdown on "e-crime" has revealed gangs operating out of six counties on Chinese mainland, who route money and Internet communications through Taiwan and Southeast Asian countries to avoid detection.

Most hook their victims through text messages that claim to be from banks or the police, tricking victims into calling fake numbers and giving their account details.

In the West, such practices are calling "phishing" and usually take place through spam e-mails.

"The biggest characteristic is that these people are very slick talkers and they use very sophisticated technology," said Huang Zuyue, vice director of the crimes investigation unit of the Ministry of Public Security.

Other favorite tricks are to send "sweet words" to lure the victim into a revealing conversation, too-good-to-be-true schemes, threats of retaliation if money is not sent, and even fake kidnapping schemes, where the victim hears what they believe to be their child struggling or screaming, Huang said.

About 70 percent of victims are elderly, and about 70 percent women.

The scams, which originally targeted people on the wealthy coastline, are moving to central and inland areas of the mainland.

Neighborhoods in Beijing are festooned with banners reminding people to beware of online financial crimes.

The gangs act like corporations, with departments in charge of technology and others in charge of transferring the money.

More than 1,400 people suspected of involvement in such crimes had been detained so far, Huang said.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend