People who spend time listening to fraud calls are also the likeliest victims of fraud, Criminal Investigation Bureau (CIB) officials said on Sunday.
“If you spend time actually listening to what an unidentified caller — who is usually a part of a fraud ring — has to say, you have a greater chance of becoming a victim,” said Chuang Ding-kai (莊定凱), captain of the bureau’s Second Investigation Brigade.
In addition to analyzing the likeliest victims, Chuang said that fraud victims often become repeat victims because fraud rings tend to target people who trust them, changing their scenarios and repeatedly targeting the same victims.
“Once you buy into the fraud scenario, they [fraud rings] will regard you as an easy target and will come back to you again,” Chuang said.
Fu Chen-yuan (傅振原), head of the bureau’s anti-fraud force, said “fake Internet shopping” was becoming increasingly popular. Fraud rings would set up fake Internet shopping Web sites and deliver fake products to victims, collecting the money on delivery.
“Once a victim discovers that whatever’s in the package isn’t the original order, it’s too late,” Fu said.
Fu said that in a “traditional” fraud scenario, the suspects would request the victims to wire transfer money, which could leave behind evidence.
With fake Internet shopping, however, there is no evidence, which makes it more difficult for police to track fraud rings.
Taiwanese fraud rings have increasingly targeted Chinese people, with operations based both in Taiwan and China, Chuang said.
Taiwan and China signed a cooperation agreement on crime fighting on June 25 last year.
Bureau officials said the light punishment for fraud ring members was one of the reasons why their numbers were growing.