KUALA LUMPUR: Beware when you are asked to fill in survey forms at shopping complexes, as scammers are using it as a new tactic to find victims.
A 25-year-old designer is the latest victim of such a scam.
Leong, as she wanted to be known, said she was at a mall in Jalan Bukit Bintang when she was approached by a young man in his 20s to complete a survey form.
The guy told her that his name was “Vincent” and that he needed her to help him fill in one last survey form.
Leong decided to help him, but “Vincent” claimed he did not have the form with him at the moment.
She then followed him to a restaurant, where two of his “colleagues” were waiting.
Leong said the survey form looked normal with questions related to shopping complex preference and her personal details.
“They showed their true colours after I filled in the form. They said they were from a money laundering company and would give me RM20,000 if I gave them RM10,000.
“I said I didn’t want it and that I had no money. They then asked me to take a personal loan instead,” she told a press conference organised by MCA Public Services and Complaints Department head Datuk Seri Michael Chong.
“They said I could not decline as my details had been submitted to the company. I was told that Bank Negara also had my details and I would still be taxed for the RM20,000 bonus,” she said.
“They threatened that if I did not pay them, I would not be able to walk out of the mall,” she said, adding that the men showed her photos of “other victims” with serious injuries.
Scared and confused, Leong phoned a friend and managed to get RM10,000 banked into her account so that she could pay the men to get herself out of the sticky situation.
The men then took her to an ATM machine in the mall, but she could only withdraw a maximum of RM5,000.
That was not the end of it. The scammers continued to call her after she left the mall, asking for more money to be banked into an account belonging to one Soon Chan Seng.
Leong later lodged a police report and filed a complaint with Chong.
At the press conference, Chong said he managed to talk to “Vincent” but could not get more information from him.
“I would also like to ask Soon to come forward as I believe he could also be a victim,” he said.
He urged members of the public to be cautious when asked to fill out survey forms at shopping malls.
“Even if it might seem legitimate, be sure to get the person’s particulars or name cards,” he said.