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News Press Releases Gordon alarmed over rise of credit card fraud during pandemic

Gordon alarmed over rise of credit card fraud during pandemic


January 11, 2022 Press Releases
Gordon alarmed over rise of credit card fraud during pandemic

Re-electionist Senator Richard J. Gordon today urged Congress leaders to expedite the passage of a counterpart measure mandating SIM card registration in the wake of reports that credit card fraud rose by 21 percent during the pandemic.

Gordon, who chairs the Senate Committee on Government Corporations and Public Entreprises, said the measure has become even more urgent during this pandemic where people are struggling to make both ends meet.

“We call on our colleagues in Congress to act on this measure as there has been a sharp rise in fraud caused by SIM card swap schemes, committed by new-age criminals who are out to milk innocent customers,” he said.

“Ang digital infrastructure ay dapat na magsilbing landas patungo sa isang ligtas at mabilis na lipunan, maging mabisang uri ng hanapbuhay. Ito ay dapat maging benepisyo sa mga masunuring mamamayan, at hindi sa mga kawatan,” he added.

The Credit Card Association of the Philippines (CCAP), an organization of 18 major credit card firms, wrote to the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) and telecom firms Smart and Globe after SIM card swap-related cases rose by 21 percent during pandemic.

The CCAP relayed that criminals resorted primarily to the “virtual account take over” scam where hackers gain access to the credit card owner’s mobile number, allowing them to intercept the one-time password (OTP) needed to authorize online transactions.

It called on the NTC and the two major telecommunication players to immediately address the issue as the continued commission of crime affect customers’ trust with banks and the telecom companies themselves.

Gordon, who first filed the bill in 2007, said the passage of Senate Bill (SB) 2395, or the proposed SIM Card Registration Act, will allow authorities to zero in on fraudsters and their numbers through the mandatory registration of SIM card numbers.

“Once there is a law that mandates telecom companies to screen and record every SIM card owner’s pertinent details, we can make sure that the syndicates behind the online credit card fraud will be held responsible,” he pointed out.

“Unauthorized SIM swaps like this is another crime that authorities should also be able to look at seriously. We call on the NBI and PNP Cybercrime divisions to investigate and track down these criminals,” he added.

The Senate has submitted a consolidated report of the bill requiring several government agencies to formulate the necessary guidelines in the proper implementation of the SIM card registration process.

Failure or refusal of the owner to register their SIM card will result in denial of sale by retailer or loss of load credits after 30 days.