A total of 5,718 cases involving non-existent loan fraud were reported last year involving losses of over RM62 million, said Bukit Aman Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) director Datuk Zainuddin Yaacob.
He said this was an increase from the 5,309 cases with estimated losses of RM48.4 million in the previous year.
As of 18 May this year, a total of 1,987 cases of non-existent loan fraud have been reported with losses totalling RM20.2 million, he said in a statement yesterday.
He said the economic downturn due to the Covid-19 pandemic, coupled with the strict conditions for licensed financial institutions to approve loans, was seen as an ‘opportunity’ by these non-existent money lending syndicates.
“Along with the Covid-19 pandemic, many have lost their jobs, and the business sector has been severely affected as well.
“As such, loan fraud syndicates are actively promoting loans with low-interest as well as fast approval and easy conditions to attract victims,” he said.
Zainuddin said the police were taking various measures to combat the crime, including via special operations, besides trying to increase public awareness over the matter.
He advised the public not to easily believe such loan schemes advertised on social media such as Facebook and WhatsApp.
The public may also check the Ministry of Housing and Local Government’s website for the list of licensed money lending companies at https://www.kpkt.gov.my/index.php/pages/view/585
Bank account or telephone numbers suspected of being involved in cases of fraud can be checked at ‘https://ccid.rmp.gov.my/semakmule/’, he added.
The public may also contact the CCID Scam Response Centre at 03-26101599/1599 if they have any doubts.