A Chinese University of Hong Kong student lost nearly $155,000 after being duped into transferring her money via a simple phone scam.
The 18-year-old student from mainland China, identified only by her last name Zhang, told police that she got a call from a man claiming to be a policeman from Hangzhou, according to Apple Daily.
According to SCMP
, a police source explained:
“The man accused the victim of being involved in a deception case and instructed her to hand over the details and password of her mainland bank account, saying it was for investigative purposes.”
Zhang discovered something was amiss after she discovered on Sunday that her bank account password had been changed. She promptly contacted the police.
On Monday, authorities announced that the scammer had taken HK $1.2 million, or about $155,000, out of her mainland account.
Authorities are claiming the recent scam may be the largest amount of money stolen from a student. This year alone, 37 students have reportedly been scammed out of nearly $645,000.
The local police warned the public against falling under similar scam, advising that real police officers would never ask people to surrender sensitive information over the phone, let alone ask to transfer large amounts of money.