MANILA, Philippines – Bayan Patroller “Sher” wanted to buy an iPad Mini at a discounted price, so when she saw the advertisement posted in online selling site Sulit.com.ph, she grabbed the opportunity.
"Nagtext-text na kami tapos nagpakilala siyang ng doktora, sabi niya you can check my name with PRC," she said.
She sent P13,500 to the seller but no gadget was delivered.
The same thing happened to Kim and Jeff (not their real names). After the deal was closed and they sent their payment, the same seller suddenly could no longer be reached.
Thus, they decided to report the incident to the police.
Bayan Mo, iPatrol Mo (BMPM) was able to contact the supposed seller who is a doctor by profession.
But she said she was not involved in any of those transactions and somebody used her name and photo.
"Definitely natakot ako…Somebody used my name for a scam," said Dra. Mildred Tayag.
According to the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, many have been victimized by this type of scam.
They urge people to report such incidents immediately.
“Usually ang sinasampa natin dito is Article 315, estafa, or kung hindi sila totoong iyon at ginagamit lang ang pangalan, kakasuhan din natin ng Article 178, concealing true name and identity," said fraud investigator PO3 Ronnie del Rosario.
Meanwhile, Sulit.com sent a written statement saying they are now investigating suspicious ads that flow into their website.
“All transactions happen between the buyer and the seller only so we highly encourage the buyers to go the extra mile - check the seller's feedback, ask for actual photos, and choose to do a meet-up, to avoid being scammed,” said Jean Magboo, PR supervisor of Sulit.com.ph
They also plan to screen the ads first before posting in order to prevent scammers from using their website.
"To ensure the quality of ads being posted on our website, we will be implementing a screening procedure soon wherein ads that will be posted under our Buy and Sell category will be reviewed by our team first before it gets approved for posting,” said Magboo. -- Report from ANC