Gatchalian Seeks In-Depth Senate Investigation Into SMS Phishing, Online Bank Hacking

Gatchalian was seeking an in-depth Senate investigation into SMS phishing and online bank hacking incident.

SHERWIN GATCHALIAN — The senator was seeking an in-depth Senate investigation into SMS phishing and online bank hacking incident.

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian
Photo source: Manila Bulletin

In filing Senate Resolution No. 961, Gatchalian said that it’s imperative that the Senate investigated the proliferation of unauthorized bank transactions and the SMS phishing offering non-existent jobs to unsuspecting mobile phone users.

According to the senator, there’s a need for a more comprehensive investigation on those issues in order to enable them to come up with remedial legislation that will address the public’s concern over breach of their personal data and ascertain if business establishments, banks, and concerned regulatory agencies were implementing adequate security measures and controls as well as enforcing consumer redress mechanisms.

We have to ensure that the concerned agencies have ample powers to secure the protection of personal information and monies of the general public and if possible, prevent similar incidents from happening,” Gatchalian said.

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A number of complainants claimed that they have been victimized by scammers who sent text messages offering prizes, gifts, discounted items, online jobs, or pretending to represent reputable companies and the scammers would, later on, lure their would-be victims into revealing their one-time password (OTP) or personal information.

The victims who took on to social media claimed that they neither unsuspectingly gave their one-time password nor clicked any suspicious link and yet cybercriminals were able to access their bank accounts and transferred the money to a Union Bank account of a certain “Mark Nagoyo”.

Dapat matigil na o maiwasan na maulit ang mga ganitong pangyayari. Mababawasan ang kumpiyansa ng publiko sa mga bangko kung magpapatuloy ito,” Gatchalian said.

Moreover, the senator said that it’s also worrisome that mobile phone numbers were exposed to those organized global syndicates that were behind those so-called spam text messages.

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