Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) headed by bankero TG Limcaoco has warned the public of increasing financial cybercrimes and urged them to protect their personal information when doing online transactions.
BPI chief digital officer Noel Santiago said in his presentation at the 5th National Data Privacy Conference that fraudsters use various tactics to obtain personal information and commit crimes, such as phishing, vhishing, smishing, and identity theft.
The bankero pointed out that some fraudsters seek to obtain personal information by using available data about a person online and gaining more access to other details and information directly through a phone call with the person.
According to him, the use of social media platforms has made the sharing of personal data easy and ordinary—from names and birthdays, schools, pictures, friends, to professional information, among others. Blogging sites also show details of personal experiences.
Due to the widespread use of these websites, people may unknowingly share sensitive information about themselves, which can be obtained by fraudsters and use them to commit various crimes, including identity theft, he said.
Santiago revealed that even as a person’s social media account is set in private, his or her friends might not have been placed in the same setting.
“A lot of people say that their settings are safe and private. Although, what we don’t know is if our friends’ accounts are on private setting as well. They post pictures that you may be tagged in, and you should be cautious of that too, because while your account may be protected, your friends accounts may have a different setting,” Santiago said.
Santiago shared two #BPIcybersecuriTips to help Filipinos ensure their data remain secured and protected from fraudsters.
First, one should have a separate email address for online banking accounts. Santiago encouraged users to have a different email address for social media websites and other online subscriptions. This way, he said, users can secure their private messages and other financial information.
Second, one should dispose of online delivery packages properly. According to Santiago, users need to be careful when disposing of packages received from various online stores. They contain personal information that can trigger identity theft as a package contains a user’s name, address, and contact number. One should make sure to remove or shred personal information found on packaging labels to protect one’s data so cyber criminals will not be able to use the information, he added.