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2 nabbed for selling prepaid SIM cards with existing e-wallet accounts

Two alleged sellers of prepaid SIM cards with verified e-wallet accounts were arrested in Makati City, GMA's Emil Sumangil reported on “24 Oras”.

Operatives of the Philippine National Police Anti-Cybercrime Group (PNP-ACG) nabbed the suspects after undercover policemen tried to purchase SIM cards from the suspects.

According to the PNP, the transaction violated Republic Act 8484 or the Access Devices Regulation Act of 1998.

“Using the prepaid SIM card, verified GCash account number, they can do transactions online. Transferring of money, buying and selling. Pwede rin sila magpabili ng pagkain nang walang kahirap-hirap na hindi naman sa kanilang pera ang ginagamit na pambili,” Police Colonel Jay Guillermo, PNP-ACG crime response unit deputy chief, said.

(They can even purchase food because they’re not using their own money.)

“Hindi nila alam na ‘yung pangalan nila, ‘yung picture nila, ‘yung personal info nila ay ginagamit sa krimen. So pag tayo ay nag-iimbestiga, magiging sila ang mga suspects kasi ang ginagamit ng mga taong nandoon, nasa likod na kumikita ng malaki, ito ang pinapakita nilang impormasyon, yung mga nakuha nila sa maliliit na tao,” he added.

(They are not aware that their names, photos, and personal information were being used for crimes. So when we investigate, they will become the suspects because the people behind the scheme who are earning from this, are using their victims’ information.)

The suspects refused to give statements but based on initial investigation, buyers purchase each SIM card from their victims for P150. They will then offer it to online hackers P400 apiece. These transactions, they added, often occur in provinces.

With this, authorities warned the public against selling prepaid cards and personal information.

“Minsan nga yung kaharap natin naloloko na tayo, paano pa yung hindi natin kaharap? ‘Wag natin ibenta yung ating mga sim card na verified kasi ito na ngayon nga trend na ginagamit ng mga scammers para makapanloko,” Police Inspector Michelle Sabino, PNP-ACG spokesperson, said.

(Sometimes, we are being swindled by the people upfront so what more can they do behind our backs? Let us refrain from selling verified SIM cards because it is now the trend for scamming.)

Following the incident, the police underscored the importance of the passage of the proposed SIM Card Registration Act in eradicating cybercrimes and similar acts.

“This would deviate itong mga scammers from creating yung mga accounts na ganyan kasi mahuhuli ka na eh,” said Sabino.

(This would deviate scammers from creating such accounts because they can be caught.)—Sundy Locus/LDF, GMA News