BDO warns vs scammers taking advantage of COVID-19 lockdown

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 23 2020 04:38 PM

MANILA - BDO Unibank on Monday warned clients against scammers who are taking advantage of the loan payment extension announced by banks due to the COVID-19 lockdown of Luzon. 

Fraudsters are sending out emails or calling customers and posing as “legit” bank personnel offering a loan payment extension, the Philippines' largest lender said.

"They may offer a 60-day loan payment extension and ask for account details including OTPs [one-time PIN] so they can proceed with transferring money to their account."

The scammers intend to get the account details and OTP (one-time PIN) of the customers to take over the account, BDO said.

The bank reminded clients not to share their personal information such as bank account numbers, usernames, passwords, or OTP as scammers can use this information to steal identities, access online bank accounts, and steal money.

Personal information can also include birthdays, mother’s maiden name, the street where one grew up in—any unique information about the user can be used by the scammer to unlock online bank accounts, BDO said. 

Bank clients should also be prudent when posting personal information on social media channels. BDO also warned against clicking links in emails, SMS messages or messages via social media channels. 

"Hovering on these website links however will reveal a fake website’s address on the preview."

These fake websites allow scammers to harvest personal information, BDO said. 

The bank said it would never include links in its official communications, and that real bank officers will never ask for clients’ personal information, such as OTPs, under any circumstance. 

Clients may report suspicious communications to ReportPhish@bdo.com.ph, BDO said.