绑架勒索制假,手机诈骗大观 / Mobile Scams: Kidnapping, Extortion, Forgery

绑架勒索制假,手机诈骗大观

几个月前我在北京收到一条手机中文短信,说我的孩子被绑架了,要救他们就必须马上付赎金。

虽然我没被吓到,但还是吃了一惊,因为从一开始我就知道这不是真的。后来我向当地很多朋友、同事提起了这件事,结果他们的反应几乎一致:他们都经历过多次这样的手机诈骗。

后来就发生了一个多月前的重大新闻——多国警察首次联手查处类似案件,在东南亚数国逮捕了约600名嫌犯。

这个犯罪团伙组织严密,他们以内地富人为目标,通过随机拨打手机号码和编造五花八门的故事,告知机主已卷入重大法律纠纷,劝说他们赶紧破财免灾。

这些报道读起来无异于天方夜谭,但这帮人非常擅长卸去人们的防范心理,编造有鼻子有眼的说辞,恫吓受害人。

我知道有些人因此上当受骗,不仅损失金钱,还经历了恐惧、烦恼和不安。这些恶棍组织性极强,能将他们绳之以法实在是大快人心。

今天我又了解到一个手机诈骗短信的新变种,事关假资格证书的制售。只要6,000元人民币(需预付20%)就能伪造一张逼真的资格证书,用来应聘医生等职业。他们号称制作的假证和卫生部(the Ministry of Health)颁发的证书一模一样。

他们还有好多其他假证可供挑选,如教师证、飞行员证、工程师本等。

这种想法简直太恐怖了。即便录取脑外科医师或飞行员不会光凭一纸证书,但让冒牌货鱼目混珠的风险却大大提高。

我太太给向她发假证短信的号码回了电,了解到更多情况,紧接着就报了警。警方很感谢她提供的情况。

骗子的手段总是花样翻新,他们似乎把美国马戏团老板P.T.巴纳姆的名言“这个世界上,每分钟都有傻瓜出生”当成了座右铭。

接下来的骗术又会是什么呢?

Mobile Scams: Kidnapping, Extortion, Forgery

A few months ago while in Beijing I received a short message on my cell phone, in Chinese, informing me that my kids had been kidnapped and telling me the first steps I should take on getting them back by paying a ransom.

I was shocked although not alarmed, because as it happened, I knew this was not true. Later I mentioned it to various local friends and colleagues, all of whom had the same reaction: this kind of mobile phone scam happens to them fairly often.

Then there was the extraordinary news a month or so ago about unprecedented cooperation in an international police investigation which resulted in the arrest of some 600 alleged crooks in a variety of Southeast Asian countries.

This well-organized gang had targeted wealthy mainlanders by randomly cold-calling cell phones and trying out a variety of phony explanations of how the called party was in big trouble with the law and needed to remit funds to get out of trouble.

It may sound unlikely when you read about it, but they were expert in catching people off guard and verbally intimidating them with plausible sounding stories.

I know someone who was scammed in this way, and apart from the lost funds, it was a very scary, unpleasant and unsettling experience. These folks were very well-organized, and it’s good they got nabbed.

The latest new twist I learned about today is an SMS offer to sell fake qualification certificates. For RMB 6,000 (20% in advance, please), they offer to produce a certificate real-looking enough for you to get a job, as, for example, a doctor. They claimed their fake doctors’ certification looks just like the ones issued by China’s Ministry of Health.

They also have a variety of other certificates available for you to choose from: teacher, airline pilot, engineer, etc.

That’s a pretty scary thought. Even allowing for the fact that it would normally take more than just a certificate to get a job as a brain surgeon or jet pilot, opening the door to this kind of misrepresentation by imposters is hugely risky.

My wife called the number offering the fakes which was texted to her mobile phone, and obtained some more information. Her next call was to the police, who were very appreciative of the tip.


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