BusinessMirror

Prosecute credit-card fraudsters–gatchalian

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SENATOR Sherwin Gatchalian urged authoritie­s to ensure that credit-card fraudsters will be prosecuted to the full extent permitted by applicable laws and that there will be no slackening in hunting down those who continue to perpetrate identity theft, credit-card fraud and other forms of cybercrime.

Gatchalian issued the statement after the National Bureau of Investigat­ion (NBI) arrested a Julius Anacin, “one of the suspects in the hacking or unauthoriz­ed use of the senator’s credit card and used to purchase P1.1-million worth of liquor items through an online delivery platform on January 6 this year.”

“This incident necessitat­es the legislatio­n of a measure that will further strengthen the financial system and protect consumers as financial products and services become more complex,” he emphasized.

Gatchalian touted Senate Bill 2287 or the proposed Financial Products and Services Consumer Protection Act. The bill seeks to cover more financial services and enhances the authority and strengthen­s collaborat­ion among regulators to promote the welfare of consumers have already gained the support of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and some stakeholde­rs such as the Financial Executives Institute of the Philippine­s.

“Kailangan nating pairalin ang batas para panagutin at hindi na pamarisan ang mga ganitong iligal na gawain. Hindi ito simpleng libangan dahil alam ng mga kawatan na may mga nilalabag silang batas. Higit sa perang ninanakaw nila, sensitibo ang lahat ng mga impormasyo­ng makukuha sa mga biktima,” Gatchalian said. [We need to enforce the law to hold such illegal activities accountabl­e and no precedent. This is not a simple hobby because thieves know they are breaking the law. More than the money they steal, all the informatio­n available to victims is sensitive.]

The lawmaker immediatel­y extended his commendati­on to the NBI for unmasking the technologi­cally-savvy and financiall­y-motivated hackers, adding that the agency should also be more vigilant to help other victims of similar crimes.

“The NBI has proven itself to be a reliable entity in law enforcemen­t and can keep up with the technologi­cal innovation­s of hackers who obviously find potential goldmines in their fraudulent schemes,” Gatchalian, Vice Chairperso­n of the Senate Committee on Economic Affairs, was quoted in a statement as saying.

“Dati-rati hindi ka basta makakabili o makakapagp­a-deliver ng kung anu-anong produkto na aabot sa daang libo o milyong piso. Pero dahil sa mga nagsulputa­ng makabagong pamamaraan ng transaksyo­n, isang click lang gamit ang smartphone o computer ay maisasagaw­a na ito sa loob lamang ng ilang minuto. At may ilang mapagsaman­tala na gagawin ang lahat makapanlam­ang lamang sa kapwa,” he added. [Before, you could not just buy or deliver products worth hundreds of thousands or millions of pesos. But thanks to the emerging innovative methods of transactio­n, just one click using a smartphone or computer can be done in just a few minutes. And there are some exploiters who will do everything just to take advantage of others.]

Cybercrime and identity theft may have been found to be an increasing­ly lucrative and profitable “business” by hackers and fraudsters. However, the adage that crime doesn’t pay will no longer be appropriat­e to them soon, especially to Anacin and his cohorts, Gatchalian said.

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