Singapore courts warn of scam where victims are asked to pay to stop fake enforcement order

SINGAPORE: The Singapore courts warned on Friday (Jul 15) of a recent phone scam where victims would be asked to make a payment to stop a fake enforcement order.

The victims would first receive a call purportedly from a law firm claiming that there was a court order to seize their properties and remove their belongings.

To lend authenticity to the claim, the scammers would reference the residential addresses – past or present – of the victims. 

They would also attempt to ask for the victims’ personal information, such as their names, National Registration Identity Card numbers, foreign identification numbers and bank account details. The scammers will do so on the pretext of verifying them.

In order to stop the enforcement order, the scammer would ask the member of the public to make a payment of about S$3,000 to a specific bank account.

These calls would often contain a +65 prefix, suggesting an incoming overseas call, said the Singapore courts. The Singapore courts comprise the Supreme Court, State Courts and Family Justice Courts.

“In some cases, the scammer will request the caller to contact 6336 0644, a past Supreme Court contact number no longer in use, for any further verification,” said the courts in a media release. 

“Members of the public are advised to exercise caution, and to not respond to any unsolicited calls or automated messages.

“They should not respond to callers’ instructions to disclose any personal particulars or to make payment. Those who have been affected by such incidents are strongly advised to lodge a police report.”

People are advised not to release personal information over the phone to anyone purporting to be from a law firm or from the courts without seeing and verifying the contents or the authenticity of the court order which the caller claims to be relying on to obtain the information. 

If a copy of any court order is provided, it can be verified using the Authentic Court Orders service at no charge, and by keying in the corresponding verification details found on the court order. 

The website address should also be keyed in instead of using a shortened link that may be provided, as this may lead to a fake website. 

“We would also like to take this opportunity to remind members of the public that our officers will not initiate calls to either request for payment or ask for personal details,” said the Singapore Courts.

“All information required by the courts will be sent via a Registrar’s Notice or correspondence from the respective court.”

If there is any doubt about the authenticity of a court order or a phone call claiming to seek to enforce a court order, members of the public can verify the court order and then seek legal advice. 

Those who wish to provide any information related to such fraudulent activities can call the police hotline at 1800 255 0000 or submit it online.