The Philippine National Police Anti-Cybercrime Group (PNP ACG) is warning the public about new scammer tactics that have emerged despite a 50% reduction in SIM card-related crimes since the implementation of the SIM registration law. Previously, there were 2,318 cases of SIM card crimes, but that number has dropped to 1,134 cases after the law’s enforcement. However, scammers are finding ways to bypass the law.

One method scammers are using takes advantage of the five-day grace period, allowing previously deactivated SIM cards to be registered past the initial deadline. Additionally, scammers are purchasing unregistered, inactive SIM cards that they use to intercept One-Time Passwords (OTPs) to gain access to popular messaging apps like WhatsApp, Telegram, and Viber. By using Over-The-Top (OTT) services, scammers can operate without alerting telecommunications companies. These SIM cards remain inactive until registered, allowing scammers to accept calls and text messages without being able to initiate communication.

Scammers also exploit financially distressed individuals who sell registered SIM cards and digital wallet accounts. Since there are no restrictions on the number of SIM cards a person can own, scammers have found a loophole to exploit.

The PNP ACG is committed to monitoring and combating these evolving scammer tactics. They urge the public to stay informed and vigilant to protect themselves and their communities from falling victim to scams.


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