Whether it’s a Macau scam or Internet love scam, it’s always best to stay aware of all the devious conmen (and conwomen) out there trying to part you from your money. We’ve previously covered how to avoid the latest charity scams, online scams, and even scams targeting the elderly – and now we want to make sure our readers and customers don’t get tricked by any swindlers who are falsely using the RinggitPlus name.
There have been isolated incidents of scammers posing as employees of RinggitPlus on social media and instant messaging apps. These individuals claim to offer services such as securing personal loans and credit cards, only to then ask for various fees to “process” the application.
RinggitPlus vs Scams: the differences
Here are some key differences between how official RinggitPlus services work, and a scammer who is falsely operating under our name.
- RinggitPlus services are 100% free of charge. We do not charge customers for using our platform to apply for financial products offered by financial institutions in Malaysia. We also do not have any fees after application. That’s right, there are no legal, processing, tax, stamp duty, or even service fees involved.
- However, note that in some application instances (such as with insurance policies), RinggitPlus assists with the payment process only on our website using secure payment gateways.
- We have found that scammers most often inform victims that there are some fees to be paid before the personal loan funds are released. The fees are also usually required to be paid to a third-party bank account. Remember, RinggitPlus is completely free to use!
- There is NO SUCH THING as a RinggitPlus Personal Loan. One common scam involves personal loans "offered" by RinggitPlus. RinggitPlus is a platform that allows individuals to apply for personal loans (and other financial products) offered by financial institutions (banks and certified money lenders) in Malaysia. RinggitPlus (nor its parent company Jirnexu Sdn Bhd) does not provide its own personal loans, credit cards, or other financial products.
- In some scam cases, we found that victims were given documents with the RinggitPlus letterhead for personal loan agreements supposedly offered by RinggitPlus. So if someone tries to offer you a "RinggitPlus Personal Loan", you now know it’s definitely a scam.
Prevention starts with you
Example of an email phishing scam (Image: Bank Negara Malaysia)
In general, it always helps to be extra cautious. Here are some additional ways where you can protect yourselves from possible scam cases.
- Do extensive background checks. Just because someone says he/she claims they work for a certain company, does not mean he does. These days, anyone can print their own name cards, so that should not be a proof that he/she genuinely works there. Contact the company he or she supposedly works for, and see if the individual actually works there. When it comes to handing over sensitive documents, it doesn’t hurt to be extra cautious. For RinggitPlus, you can contact us at 03 7890 0808 for any queries you may have.
- If something doesn’t feel right, do NOT proceed. If an "agent" starts requesting for fees or charges that sound dubious, contact the authorities immediately. Don’t be pressured into doing something you don’t feel comfortable with.
- Be careful of messages from non-official channels. For example, any follow-up contact from RinggitPlus regarding applications are always conducted via multiple channels: email, SMS, and telephone. For email, always double check the domain name – for example, all official contact via email will be sent from an address ending with "@ringgitplus.com". Also, note that RinggitPlus will only contact you on these channels if you have already made an application on our website.
- If an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Scammers always prey on the gullible by promising tempting offers, “limited time” promotions, or “backdoor deals” – especially to those who aren’t officially eligible. These shady deals always come with a catch…which usually will cost you dearly. If you receive a message of a “guaranteed approval” personal loan offer which also includes lines like “blacklisted individuals welcome”, be extremely careful.
Macau scams have been around for years, though they're more notorious in recent times. (Image: NST)
Most of the time, those who fall victims to financial scams are either blinded by the good offers, or are in a situation where they desperately need money. In these instances the victims’ judgment is affected, resulting in making bad decisions.
If you ever come across a potential scam like what we describe in this article, don’t hesitate to double check either with family and friends, or better, with the company where the potential scammer says he/she is working for.
Finally, now that you’ve armed yourself with knowledge, stay informed and spread the word!