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Apple Pay Is Now Available In Malaysia!

Apple Pay Is Now Available In Malaysia!

Apple did not announce anything official, but Apple Pay is now available in Malaysia!

Here is what you need to know, and how you can start using Apple Pay in Malaysia!

 

Apple Pay Is Now Available In Malaysia!

Apple Pay was first launched way back in September 2014, together with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. However, its global availability was slow and some would say, tortuous.

For years, Apple fans in Malaysia have requested for Apple Pay to be introduced in Malaysia, and could only look at Singapore in envy, when Apple Pay was introduced there more than six years ago in April 2016!

But the wait is over! The steady drip of leaks has finally culminated in actual confirmation that yes, Apple Pay is now available in Malaysia!

Apple did not announce anything, but you can now add your debit / credit cards to Apple Pay and start using it in Malaysia!

This makes Malaysia only the second country in Southeast Asia to support Apple Pay. The first was Singapore in April 2016.

Malaysia is also only the 10th territory in Asia to support Apple Pay, after Australia, China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, Japan, Kazakhstan, New Zealand and Singapore.

 

What Banks Currently Support Apple Pay In Malaysia?

Right off the bat, I have to warn you that support for Apple Pay is still pretty limited in Malaysia, to just three banks as far as I can tell.

Banks In Malaysia That Support Apple Pay

You will be able to register debit and credit cards issued by these banks :

  • AmBank
  • Maybank
  • Standard Chartered Bank

Banks In Malaysia That Do Not Support Apple Pay

You won’t be able to add debit or credit cards from these banks :

  • CIMB
  • Citibank
  • UOB
  • OCBC

I will update this article as and when I find out what other banks in Malaysia support, or don’t support, Apple Pay.

Read more : How To Add MySJ Vaccine Certificate To Apple Wallet + Health

 

How To Register Apple Pay In Malaysia?

To help you register your debit / credit card with Apple Pay, here is my step-by-step guide :

Step 1 : Open the Wallet app in your iPhone.

Step 2 : Tap on the Add button to “Add a credit or debit card to get started using Apple Pay”.

Step 3 : In the next screen, tap on the Continue button.

Step 4 : You will now be asked to “scan” your debit / credit card using your iPhone camera, positioning it within the frame.

Step 5 : The Wallet app will try to pick up important details of your credit card like :

  • Name
  • Credit card number
  • Expiry date

If nothing happens, that means it cannot read the details off the card. Then you will need to tap on the Enter Card Details Manually option at the bottom.

Step 6 : Whether your card details are detected or not, verify the key card details required by Apple Pay :

  • Name
  • Card Number
  • Expiry Date
  • Security Code

If the detected details are wrong, edit them to make sure they match your debit / credit card.

Step 7 : You will need to key in the Security Code, which is a 3-digit or 4-digit CSC (Card Security Code) / CVV (Card Verification Value) / CVC (Card Verification Code) usually printed on the back of your debit / credit card.

Step 8 : If your credit card is not supported, you will get a pop-up message saying :

Your Issuer Does Not Yet Offer Support for This Card

Ask your issuer if they offer cards that support Apple Pay.

If your card is supported, you will see a list of Terms and Conditions. You will need to tap on Agree to continue.

Step 9 : The screen show details of your credit card while the Wallet app sets it up for Apple Pay. Just wait for a few seconds.

Step 10 : You will now be asked to verify your card for Apple Pay, usually through Text Message. Tap Next to continue with the verification process.

Step 11 : You will receive an SMS with a 6-digit One Time Password (OTP). You need to key that in within 2 minutes :

Card enrolment OTP for your digital wallet is XXXXXX. It will expire after 2 mins. If you have not performed this, please contact the bank.

Step 12 : Tap Next after keying in the OTP, and you should see the Card Activated notice.

That’s it! Your credit card is now ready for Apple Pay. When you open your Wallet, you should see that debit / credit card listed.

 

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Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Confirmed : Apple Pay Is Launching Soon In Malaysia!

Multiple leaks confirm that Apple Pay is launching soon in Malaysia! Here is what you need to know…

 

Leaks Confirm Apple Pay Is Launching Soon In Malaysia!

Multiple leaks have more or less let the cat out of the bag – that Apple Pay is launching soon in Malaysia!

This would make Malaysia the second country in Southeast Asia to support Apple Pay, and the 10th territory in Asia, after Australia, China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, Japan, Kazakhstan, New Zealand and Singapore.

AmBank Sent Apple Pay SMS

The first to leak was AmBank, when they sent out an SMS to their customers in July 2022, prematurely telling them that they can now use Apple Pay.

It appeared to have been a test run that ran awry, as their Apple Pay website was not yet ready. But it alerted everyone to the fact that Apple Pay is coming to Malaysia.

Shopee Added Apple Pay As Payment Option

The second to leak was Shopee, which released an Apple Pay option in version 2.91.28 of their app on 2 August 2022.

If you tap on it, you will simply be asked to “ensure there’s an active card in your Apple Pay wallet to proceed“.

Of course, you can’t actually add any credit / debit card to your Apple Pay wallet yet, but you can see that it is listed as a payment option.

Maxis Accidentally Promotes Apple Pay As Payment Option

On 5 August 2022, a Maxis Centre accidentally put out a cardboard sign announcing “Apple Pay accepted here“.

The tweet was deleted by its poster, but the cardboard sign was traced to the Sri Muda Maxis Centre in Shah Alam.

sorry guys had to delete the tweets atas permintaan pihak tertentu. but don’t worry cuz apple pay is coming soon to Malaysia!

AmBank Released Their Apple Pay Portal!

On 8 August 2022, AmBank (accidentally?) released their Apple Pay portal, confirming that the contactless payment system is ready to launch in Malaysia!

The AmBank Apple Pay portal has now been removed, but here are some of the details it revealed :

  • There is no transaction limit for Apple Pay, as opposed to a transaction limit of RM250 per purchase, with a RM750 daily limit, for other contactless payment platforms.
  • There is also no transaction limit for online purchases using Apple Pay through your iPhone, iPad or Mac computer.
  • AmBank also offered some promotions, including cash back for the first purchase using Apple Pay.
  • There were two unlisted YouTube videos (now removed) showing how to pay for your purchases using Apple Pay. Basically:
    a) Look for the Apple Pay and EMV contactless payment logos at the retailer
    b) Simply tap your iPhone or Apple Watch on the credit card terminal to pay
    c) Use either Face ID, Touch ID or your passcode to verify the payment

 

Apple Pay Is Now Available In Malaysia!

You would have thought that AmBank would have learned from their July 2022 SMS mistake, but no… they didn’t.

Then again, they may have “accidentally” leaked the Apple Pay website to drum up some hype ahead of the official launch.

These “accidents” have a habit of happening…

In any case, Apple Pay is now available in Malaysia, even though there was no official launch!

Read more : Apple Pay Is Now Available In Malaysia!

Most likely, Apple will roll it out in Malaysia with the next iOS update – probably iOS 15.6.1.

Currently iOS 15.6 does not support Apple Pay in Malaysia. When you try to add a debit / credit card to the Wallet app, you get this pop-up :

To add cards, keys, tickets and passes to Wallet, look for the Add to Wallet button in apps, emails and websites.

Until Apple adds this functionality through an iOS update for Malaysia, there is simply no way to add any card to the Wallet app.

 

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
Credit Card / Paypal : https://paypal.me/techarp

Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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IBM Expands Power10 Server Line With New Models!

IBM just expanded the Power10 server line with new mid-range and scale-out systems with flexible consumption options!

Here is what you need to know…

 

IBM Expands Power10 Server Line With New Models!

IBM announced a significant expansion of its Power10 server line on July 12, 2022, with the introduction of new mid-range and scale-out systems.

The new IBM Power10 servers tout improved performance, scalability and flexibility with new pay-as-you-go options for clients looking to deploy new services quickly across multiple environments.

Joining the Power10 E1080 server that was introduced in September 2021, are these new models :

  • Power10 Midrange E1050 – a 4-socket rack server
  • Power S1014 – a 1-socket, 4U server
  • Power S1022 – a 2-socket, 2U server
  • Power S1024 – a 2-socket, 4U server

These new servers offer 2x more cores, and more than 2x more memory bandwidth than the previous Power generations.

 

IBM Partners Ready To Leverage Power10 Server Capabilities

The newly expanded IBM Power10 Server Line now offers a flexible and broad range of servers for data intensive workloads such as SAP S/4HANA, and SIBS from Silverlake Axis.

The Power10 Midrange E1050 server, for example, delivers scale (up to 16 TB) and 4-socket performance for clients who run BREAKTHROUGH with IBM for RISE with SAP.

Regional banking solution provider, Silverlake Axis, is also ready to leverage the increase compute capabilities and scalability of the new Power10 servers for their Integrated Banking Solution – SIBS.

“Today’s highly dynamic environment has created volatility, from materials to people and skills, all of which impact short-term operations and long-term sustainability of the business,” said Steve Sibley, Vice President, IBM Power Product Management.

“The right IT investments are critical to business and operational resilience. Our new Power10 models offer clients a variety of flexible hybrid cloud choices with the agility and automation to best fit their needs, without sacrificing performance, security or resilience.”

 

 

IBM Offers Power10 Server Line With Flexible Consumption Options

IBM also recently announced new flexible consumption choices with pay-as-you-go options, as well as by-the-minute metering for IBM Power Cloud.

These flexible consumption models offer clients more opportunities to lower their cost of running OpenShift solutions on IBM Power, compared to alternative platforms.

In addition, the IBM I subscription offers clients a comprehensive platform solution with hardware, software as well as support and services included in the subscription price.

 

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
Credit Card / Paypal : https://paypal.me/techarp

Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Maybank MAE + M2U Apps Running Again After Going Down!

Maybank just announced that their MAE and M2U mobile banking apps are now up and running, after going down for several hours!

Here is what you need to know…

 

Maybank MAE + M2U Mobile Apps Down!

On the morning of 25 July 2022, the MAE and M2U mobile apps went down, which Maybank confirmed.

As it so happened, both apps failed on the 25th of the month, which is when Malaysian civil servants and many other employees receive their pay.

That led to a lot of complaints, as people could not transfer the funds using the apps.

Fortunately, the Maybank website itself was operational, so users were advised to access the Maybank2U website using their web browser instead.

#MBBAlert Dear valued customers,

Kindly be informed that you may perform your banking services on Maybank2u web. We are currently experiencing intermittent slowness on our MAE and M2U MY apps.

Our sincere apologies for the inconvenience caused and we are working to resolve the matter as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience and continuous support.

Maybank did not reveal what was the reason both their M2U mobile banking app, and their MAE ewallet failed.

They finally resolved it several hours later, just before 2:30 PM.

#MBBAlert Dear valued customers,

Kindly be informed that all our services are back to normal and you may perform your banking transactions across our platforms.

Our sincere apologies for the inconvenience caused today. We thank you for your continued patience and support.

This isn’t the first time Maybank users had trouble with their banking services. On 17 January 2022, all of Maybank’s online and banking services went down!

 

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
Credit Card / Paypal : https://paypal.me/techarp

Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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No More Cash Payment At KKM Hospitals + Clinics!

Public hospitals and clinics under KKM will no longer accept cash payments starting 1 October 2022!

Here is what you need to know…

 

No More Cash Payment At KKM Hospitals + Clinics!

From 1 October 2022 onwards, public hospitals and clinics under the Malaysia Ministry of Health (KKM) will no longer accept cash payments.

They will only accept payments through e-payment methods like :

  • debit card
  • credit card
  • e-wallet

They will, however, accept cash payment if the customer has no other payment options, or a bank account.

KKM is aiming to achieve 95% cashless transactions by December 2022.

 

Why KKM Hospitals + Clinics Will No Longer Accept Cash Payments

This initiative to eliminate cash payments at KKM health facilities is part of the 2021 Malaysia Digital Economy Blueprint, which called for all federal and state agencies to prioritise cashless payments by the year 2022.

The 2021-2022 KKM Anti-Corruption Plan also called for cash payments to be eliminated at public hospitals and clinics.

The Malaysia Ministry of Health believes that eliminating cash payments at their health facilities will :

  • reduce the risk of leakage of public funds
  • increase efficiency by making payments at the counter faster, easier and safer
  • reduce the cost and work process of collecting payments
  • reduce the risk of COVID-19 infections through contactless payment

To that end, KKM had ordered the implementation of cashless payment systems at all health facilities back in June 2022, with full implementation starting 1 October 2022, targeting 95% cashless payments by December 2022.

 

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
Credit Card / Paypal : https://paypal.me/techarp

Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Will Scanning RFID Bar Codes Hack Your Phone?!

Will scanning an RFID bar code cause your phone to be hacked?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Scanning RFID Bar Codes Will Hack Your Phone!

This warning about an RFID bar code scam has gone viral on WhatsApp, and social media.

It claims that scammers are sending people RFID stickers, and asking them to scan the bar code.

Allegedly, scanning the RFID bar code will cause your phone to be hacked by these scammers!

They send the RFID to you. When you scan the bar code they hack your hp
It’s a scam

他们将 RFID 发送给您。 当您扫描条形码时,他们会入侵您
这是一个骗局

Mereka menghantar RFID kepada anda. Apabila anda mengimbas kod bar mereka menggodam anda
Ia satu penipuan ☠️👻💩😱😰

 

Truth : Scanning RFID Bar Codes Will NOT Hack Your Phone!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS circulating on WhatsApp and social media, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : There Is No RFID Bar Code Scanning Scam

First of all – let me just say that there is no such thing as an RFID bar code scanning scam. No one can hack your phone just because you scan an RFID bar code.

The bar code is nothing more than a series of numbers, which you can readily see printed under the bar code. These numbers cannot possibly hack your phone / smartphone.

Fact #2 : RFID Bar Code Is Used To Register Sticker

The bar code visible in the clear window of the TNG RFID self-fitment kit is merely the serial number for the RFID sticker (also known as an RFID tag).

This serial number is used to register the RFID sticker, by scanning scan the bar code using the TNG eWallet mobile app.

All it does is link the RFID sticker to your TNG eWallet account, so that all toll charges are automatically deducted from that account.

Read more : TNG RFID Self-Fitment Guide : How To Do It Yourself

Fact #3 : There Are Easier + Cheaper Ways To Hack Your Phone

Truth be told – there are far easier and cheaper ways to hack your phone, than send you a free RFID sticker and ask you to scan the bar code.

These scammers will have to put in considerable expense and technical expertise into hacking the TNG eWallet app, and inserting their malware that the fake RFID number would trigger.

But why bother? If they can hack the TNG eWallet, they don’t even need to send you any fake RFID bar code to scan!

Making fake RFID stickers (tags) that look like genuine TNG RFID self-fitment kits costs money. Sending these fake kits also put them at risk, because deliveries can be traced.

There are many other ways to compromise your smartphone. There is simply no reason why scammers to waste time and money on such a convoluted scheme.

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Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
Credit Card / Paypal : https://paypal.me/techarp

Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Does Malaysia Have 2nd Most Debt In Asia, After Sri Lanka?!

Did the IMF warn Malaysia about having the second most national debt in Asia, after Sri Lanka?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Malaysia Has 2nd Most Debt In Asia, After Sri Lanka!

This post about IMF warning Malaysia about having the second most national debt in Asia, after Sri Lanka, has gone viral.

People are sharing it as a warning of how Malaysia could very soon descent into the economic chaos and misery affecting Sri Lanka.

International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned that Malaysia is in a huge economic dilemma.

The second largest debt country in Asia after Sri Lanka is Malaysia.

Good Luck to Malaysian… [sic]

马民有福了😱😭

 

Truth : Malaysia Does Not Have 2nd Most Debt In Asia, After Sri Lanka!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS circulating on social media, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : IMF Did Not Say Malaysia Is In Economic Trouble

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) did not warn that Malaysia is in huge economic trouble.

In April 2022, it warned that Asian nations, like the rest of the world, are at risk of stagflation from being battered by the war in Ukraine and the slowdown in China from COVID-19.

The region faces a stagflationary outlook, with growth being lower than previously expected, and inflation being higher.

Inflation is now expected to rise 3.2% this year, a full point higher than expected in January.

Despite the downgrade, Asia remains the world’s most dynamic region, and an important source of global growth.
– Anne-Marie Gulde-Wolf, acting director of IMF Asia and Pacific

Fact #2 : Malaysia Does Not Have Second Most Debt In Asia

The claim that Malaysia has the second highest national debt in Asia is also false.

On both the GDP percentage and per capita basis, Singapore has the second highest national debt in Asia, behind Japan. Even Sri Lanka has less debt, per capita or as a percentage of its GDP, than Singapore or Japan.

Malaysia has far less national debt than Sri Lanka as a percentage of its GDP, but twice the debt on a per capita basis.

Here is a comparison I created of countries with the highest national debt in Asia :

Country Year National Debt Debt
(% of GDP)
Debt Per Capita
Japan 2020 $13,054 billion 259% $103,386
Singapore 2021 $536 billion 132.8% $98,410
Sri Lanka 2020 $81.7 billion 101.2% $3,726
Mongolia 2021 $14.3 billion 94.7% $4,294
India 2020 $2,402 billion 90.1% $1,741
China 2020 $10,115 billion 68.1% $7,164
Malaysia 2021 $239 billion 63.4% $8,644
Philippines 2021 $226 billion 57.5% $2,055

Fact #3 : IMF Optimistic Malaysia Will Expand By 5.75% In 2022

In May 2022, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) actually announced that it is optimistic that Malaysia’s economy will expand by 5.75% in 2022, driven by pent-up domestic demand and continued strong external demand.

It also said that Malaysia’s high vaccination rates, and limited movement restrictions are supporting economic expansion.

Fact #4 : High Debt Is Not Necessarily Bad

While a high national debt is not ideal, it is not necessarily a bad thing either. It really depends on how much interest needs to be paid on the debt, and what the government is using it for.

Unlike individuals who will die eventually, the government of a country can last for hundreds of years. So governments do not have to pay back all of their debts within a certain amount of time.

As long as the government can keep paying interest on its debt, it can continue to borrow money to service deficits in its budget, or to invest in projects that grow the economy.

Fact #5 : How Governments Use Money Matters More

Just like how you can use borrowed money to invest in assets or splurge on liabilities, how the government uses the borrowed money matters more than how much it borrows.

If the government uses borrowed money to invest, that will spur growth that allows it to easily repay its debts while driving down the interest it pays.

But if the borrowed money is lost through corruption or wasteful projects, the government will find it harder to pay interest on the debt and may even default on payments.

Fact #6 : High Government Spending During Pandemic Is Expected

Practically every government in the world was forced to spend significantly more during the pandemic. Most run into large deficits during the pandemic because :

  • lockdowns reduce economic activity, reducing taxes
  • governments need to spend more on healthcare to combat COVID-19
  • governments cut taxes to support citizens and businesses
  • governments provide monetary support for citizens and businesses

This isn’t unique to Malaysia, but applies across the world. That’s why Malaysia’s national debt jumped significantly after January 2020.

Fact #7 : Malaysia Has Sufficient Foreign Reserves

Malaysia’s national debt increased from $228.7 billion in 2020, to $239 billion (RM 979.8 billion) in 2021 – an increase of about 4.5% year-on-year.

While this increase pushes Malaysia close to a national debt of 65% of its GDP, it is still much lower than many other countries.

More importantly, Bank Negara Malaysia reported international reserves of $116.9 billion as of 31 December 2021, which is enough to finance 7.7 months of retained imports, and is 20% higher than the total short-term external debt.

In other words, Malaysia is not anywhere close to collapsing economically, like what happened in Sri Lanka.

Please help us FIGHT FAKE NEWS by sharing this fact check article out, and please SUPPORT our work!

 

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
Credit Card / Paypal : https://paypal.me/techarp

Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Canada Internet Outage Due To Software Update, Not China!

The country-wide mobile and Internet outage in Canada was due to a software update, not hacking by China!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : China Responsible For Mobile + Internet Outage In Canada!

Within hours of news breaking that Canada suffered a massive Internet outage, Vancouver Times posted a story claiming that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) identified China as the responsible party.

Vancouver Times also claimed that the RCMP will issue arrest warrants for the hackers responsible, who are connected to the People’s Liberation Army (PLA).

Chinese state hackers are responsible for a massive internet outage that paralyzed large parts of Canada, according to the RCMP. The federal police agency is in the process of issuing arrest warrants for several people they believe are connected to the People’s Liberation Army.

The RCMP will be holding a press conference in the next few days to announce the arrest warrants, according to sources. Canadian intelligence agencies are reportedly receiving guidance from the CIA and the FBI.

On Friday a widespread network outage from Rogers left many Canadians without mobile and internet service. The outages caused significant problems for police, courthouses, passport offices and other facilities.

The outage also disrupted services across retailers, courthouses, airlines, train networks, credit card processors and police forces, pushing many to delay business transactions. Many people were seen at Starbucks, trying to use their internet service.

The mainstream media and big tech want to hide the truth. Beat them at their own game by sharing this article!

Read more : FBI + MI5 Issue Joint Warning On Chinese Spying!

 

Truth : Canada Internet Outage Due To Software Update, Not China!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created by Vancouver Times to generate page views and money from gullible people.

Fact #1 : Vancouver Times Is A Fake News Website

Vancouver Times is a “content aggregator” (copy and paste) website that is known for creating fake news to generate more page views and money.

To look legitimate, they copy and paste news from legitimate news organisations. To drive traffic, they create fake news, sometimes masked as “satire”.

To give themselves a veneer of deniability, they label themselves as a “satire website” in their About Us section.

Vancouver Times is the most trusted source for satire on the West Coast. We write satirical stories about issues that affect conservatives.

Here are some of their fake news that we debunked :

Fact #2 : Outage Only Affected Rogers Communications

On Friday, July 8, 2022, Canada was hit by a massive mobile and Internet outage that hit businesses, banks, and even police emergency lines.

However, it only affected Rogers Communications, and did not affect rivals like BCE, Telus and Shaw Communications.

The outage was extensive because Rogers is Canada’s leading telecommunications provider, with about 11.3 million wireless subscribers, and 2.25 million retail Internet subscribers.

Read more : Shanghai Police Data On 1 Billion Chinese Citizens Leaked!

Fact #3 : RCMP Did Not Blame China For Mobile + Internet Outage

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police did not blame China for Rogers Communications’ mobile and Internet outage.

This was made up by Vancouver Times to trigger right-wing conspiracy theorists, to go viral and draw more page views.

Fact #4 : Rogers Did Not Blame China For Mobile + Internet Outage

Rogers Communications themselves did not blame China for their mobile and Internet outage.

Fact #5 : Canada Confirmed Outage Was Not A Cyberattack

While the reason behind the outage was still unknown, a spokesperson for Canadian Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino confirmed to CTV News that “the outage was not due to a cyberattack“.

Fact #6 : Rogers Confirmed Outage Due To Maintenance Update

On 11 July 2022, Rogers CEO Tony Staffieri apologised for the country-wide outage of its services.

He also said that the failure was due to “a maintenance update in our core network“. The maintenance work “caused some of our routers to malfunction early Friday morning“.

Fact #7 : Prior Rogers Outage Also Due To Software Update

This wasn’t the first time Rogers Communications’ network failed so drastically.

Just 15 months earlier – Rogers and its subsidiary, Fido, experienced a nationwide cellular service outage in April 2021.

That outage was ultimately traced to “a recent Ericsson software update” that “affected a piece of equipment in the central part” of their network, leading to “intermittent congestion impacting many customers across Canada“.

Fact #8 : It Would Have Been Considered An Act Of War

China attacking Canada’s mobile and Internet network would have been considered an act of war, if it was proven.

The Canadian government would at least have issued a strong statement, if not cut diplomatic ties with China and/or enact sanctions against the Chinese government.

Fact #9 : No One Else Reported This Story

China attacking Canada’s mobile and Internet infrastructure would have been major international news, reported across the globe.

Yet not only did no mainstream media cover this incredible story, it hasn’t even been reported in the usual conspiracy theory websites!

That’s because it was a fake story created by one publication – Vancouver Times, in their attempt to go viral again for more page views and ad money.

Fact #10 : There Is No Such Thing As A Publication Ban

Vancouver Times likes to use the “media blackout” claim, to explain why you can’t find any reputable media outlet reporting on China attacking Canada’s mobile and Internet infrastructure.

That’s utter and complete bullshit. No one – not a judge, not even the Canadian government – can control the worldwide media, or prevent anyone from writing about such an incredible story.

You can also be sure that even if the mainstream media in the Canada refused to run the story, it would have been reported by foreign media outlets, websites and blogs.

Yet, not a single foreign media outlet or online website published their account of this incredible story? That’s because IT NEVER HAPPENED…

Read more : Did Ghislaine Maxwell Just Commit Suicide In Prison?!

Fact #11 : Mainstream Media + Big Tech Would Have Loved The Hype

Vancouver Times is gaslighting you about how mainstream media and Big Tech want to hide the “truth” about China attacking Canada’s infrastructure.

They would all loved such shocking news, because it would have driven tons of traffic and engagement to their websites / platforms.

In fact, that was precisely why Vancouver Times created the fake story – to drive traffic, for the ad money.

Everything that Vancouver Times publishes should be regarded as FAKE NEWS, until proven otherwise.

Please help us fight fake news websites like Vancouver Times – SHARE this fact check out, and SUPPORT our work!

 

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£20 + £50 Paper Pound Sterling Notes Set To Expire!

The Bank of England is reminding everyone that the £20 and £50 pound sterling paper notes will expire in less than 3 months!

Here is what you need to know…

 

£20 + £50 Paper Pound Sterling Notes Set To Expire!

The Bank of England is reminding everyone that they have less than 3 months to use or swap their £20 and £50 pound sterling paper notes, which will soon expire!

The £20 and £50 pound sterling paper notes can still be used until 30 September 2022. After that, they are no longer legal tender.

But that does not mean they are worthless! Check in the next section on what you can do once these paper pound sterling notes expire!

£20 Pound Sterling

The £20 paper note featured the economist Adam Smith, and was introduced in 2007.

It is being phased out with a new £20 polymer note featuring the artist JMW Turner. This new polymer note was introduced on 20 February 2020.

 

£50 Pound Sterling

The £50 paper note featured the entrepreneur Matthew Boulton, and the engineer James Watt. This paper note was introduced in 2011.

It is being phased out with a new £50 polymer note featuring the scientist Alan Turing. This new polymer note was introduced on 21 June 2021.

 

What To Do After £20 + £50 Paper Pound Sterling Notes Expire?

After 30 September 2022, the £20 and £50 paper pound sterling notes will expire, and no longer be legal tender. They are more properly considered withdrawn notes.

That means you cannot use them to purchase goods and services, or pay businesses with them.

However, many UK banks will still accept these “expired” £20 and £50 paper notes as deposits. You can then withdraw new polymer notes from your bank account.

Some Post Office branches will also accept £20 and £50 paper notes as payment for goods and services, or as a deposit into a bank account.

As a final resort, the Bank of England (BoE) will readily exchange these withdrawn notes, through these methods :

By Post

The Bank of England accepts withdrawn notes sent to them by post. But be aware that you would be sending the notes at your own risk, and should take “appropriate measures to insure against loss or theft”.

You will need to fill in this postal exchange form, and send it to Department NEX, Bank of England, Threadneedle Street, London EC2R 8AH, together with

  • the banknotes you wish to exchange
  • a copy of your photo ID (for exchange of £700 or more)
  • a copy of proof of address (for exchange of £700 or more)
  • a cover letter with a company letterhead (for businesses)

The BoE will pay the money into your bank account, by cheque, or in new banknotes (if the exchange is less than £50).

The BoE will also accept overseas exchanges, but you will need to provide a BIC/SWIFT code as well as your IBAN or bank account number. The BoE will not charge for this service, but your account must be able to accept GBP, and your bank or intermediaries may charge you for this service.

Bank of England Counter

The Bank of England offers a counter service at Threadneedle Street, London, EC2R 8AH, which is open from 9:30 AM to 3 PM, Monday to Friday. It is closed on the weekend, and on bank holidays.

However, the BoE warns that this counter can have long queues, and waiting times may be up to an hour. So they recommend sending your banknotes through post.

Those who are exchanging their withdrawn paper notes at the counter should bring two original identity documents – one photo ID, and one proof of address (mandatory for exchange of £700 or more).

You may be asked to fill in a form, or provide additional evidence to support the origin of the banknotes. For example, if the money was from an estate, you will need to provide copies of death certificate, wills or grant of probate.

The BoE will give you new banknotes, or pay the money into your bank account (which currently takes at least 20 working days due to the backlog).

They can pay the money into any account that accepts GBP payments via SWIFT transfer. They do not charge for this service, but your bank / intermediaries may charge you.

 

New £20 + £50 Paper Pound Sterling Security Features

When you get the new £20 and £50 pound sterling polymer notes, be sure to look out for their new security features.

Hologram Image Change

If you tilt the new polymer notes from side to side, you will see the hologram image change between “Twenty / Fifty” and “Pounds”.

See Through Windows

Look at the metallic image over the main window. Check the foil is gold and green on the front of the note and silver on the back.

Within the two gold foil squares on the front of the note, the image changes between ’50’ and a ‘£’ symbol when the note is tilted.

Look for a second, smaller window in the bottom corner of the note.

 

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CIMB Online Services Up Again, After Going Down For Hours!

CIMB online and mobile banking services are finally up after failing for most of the day! Here is what you need to know!

 

CIMB Online + Mobile Services Down Most Of The Day!

At around 10 AM on Friday, July 1, 2022, CIMB started experiencing issues with their online and mobile banking services.

Some users could not load the CIMB Clicks website completely, while many users complained that they could log in, but were unable to complete any online transactions, like :

  • Interbank GIRO (IBG)
  • Instant transfers
  • DuitNow transfers

Instead, they received error messages like :

Sorry, service is temporarily unavailable. We apologise for the inconvenience caused. [CLK00495]

We’ve encountered an unexpected error. Please try again later. [CLK00507]

[/su_note]

Please enter valid Email or Mobile Number. [CLK00494]

 

CIMB Online Services Up Again, After Going Down For Hours!

This system-wide issue is not only affecting their online banking portals – CIMB Clicks and CIMB BizChannel, but also their Clicks mobile app.

At 4:37 PM, CIMB announced that Interbank GIRO (IBG) transfers were back online, but not DuitNow transfers.

Please be informed that DuitNow To Account (Instant Transfer) is unavailable at the moment. As an alternative, you may perform transaction by using Normal Transfer (IBG). Thank you.

At 5:22 PM, CIMB announced that they resolved their DuitNow services, although many of their BizChannel customers complained that they are still not able to view their statements, or make online transfers.

Their social media team is asking BizChannel users still experiencing problems to contact the BizChannel team at 1300 888 828 or +603 2297 3000 for further assistance.

CIMB ATM and counter services were not affected by this issue, so you can still head over to a nearby CIMB ATM if you need to withdraw money.

 

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Russia Defaults On Foreign Debt For First Time Since 1918!

Russia has officially defaulted on its foreign debt for the first time since 1918!

 

Russia Officially Defaults On Foreign Debt!

Russia was due to pay a $100 million interest payment on May 27, 2022; but creditors did not receive it 30 days later.

Russia says they sent the money to the Euroclear bank, which would distribute payments to its creditors. However, those payments were not made – Euroclear wouldn’t say if they were blocked, but would only say that it is adhering to all sanctions.

The US Treasury had earlier decided not to renew the special sanction exemption allowing investors to receive interest payments from Russia, letting it expire on May 25, 2022.

Russia could have paid that interest before the interest payment exemption expired, but opted not to. It has so far managed to make its payments on time, despite sanctions kicking in after Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022.

But after missing that June 26 deadline on Sunday, Russia officially defaulted on that payment – their first foreign debt default since 1918, and their first default of any kind since 1998.

  • In 1918, Vladimir Lenin refused to pay the outstanding debts of the Russian Empire during the Bolshevik Revolution.
  • In 1998, the Russian. government was rocked by the rouble crisis, and defaulted on domestic bonds, but managed to pay its foreign debt.

 

Russia To Pay In Roubles, To Avoid Future Defaults On Foreign Debt

Russia called the default artificial, because it has the money to pay its debts, but sanctions have frozen its foreign currency reserves held abroad.

The Kremlin announced on 23 June 2022, that it would make all future debt payments in roubles through a Russian bank – the National Settlements Depository, even for bonds that are denominated in dollars or other foreign currencies.

The Russian Finance Ministry said that it would offer “the opportunity for subsequent conversion into the original currency” as a way to avoid future debt defaults.

While embarrassing to the country, and would make it expensive or difficult to borrow money in the future, this technical default does not have a significant effect on Russia right now.

For one thing, Russia is already barred by sanctions from borrowing in Western markets. Russia is also not interested in borrowing foreign money, thanks to a healthy influx of money from its sale of oil and gas.

In fact, Russia had been preparing for such an eventuality by paying down its foreign debt since it annexed Crimea in 2014.

All it does at the moment is ensure that Vladimir Putin goes down in history as only the second Russian leader to be responsible for a foreign debt default.

 

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MyDebit Cash Out : Banks To Charge 50 Sen Per Withdrawal!

Banks across Malaysia will start charging 50 sen for each MyDebit Cash Out withdrawal, starting 1 July 2022!

Here is what you need to know…

 

MyDebit Cash Out : Banks To Charge 50 Sen Per Withdrawal!

Effective 1 July 2022, banks across Malaysia will start charging 50 sen for each MyDebit Cash Out withdrawal.

Here are two notices that banks recently issued about this withdrawal fee :

Dear Valued Customers,

Effective 1 July 2022, MyDebit Cash Out fee of RM0.50 per transaction will be imposed at any MyDebit selected merchants/ retailers. MyDebit Cash Out Fee will be payable by the Cardholders.

The maximum limit for MyDebit Cash Out withdrawal is RM500.00 per transaction.

Thank You.

CIMB Bank and CIMB Islamic Bank Berhad

Dear Valued Cardholders,

Please be informed that MyDebit Cash Out Fee will be revised from RM0.00 to RM0.50 per cash out* transaction which will be payable by Cardholders. The revision will be effective 1 July 2022.

Please call our Customer Service at 03-5516 9988 for enquiries.

*Cash Out = Withdrawal of cash at MyDebit selected merchants/retailers.

Thank you.

 

MyDebit Cash Out : What Is It?

For those who are unfamiliar, MyDebit Cash Out is a feature of all ATM and debit cards in Malaysia, which allows you to withdraw cash at select merchants and retailers.

MyDebit Cash Out offers customers an easier way to withdraw cash from their bank accounts, without going to an ATM machine.

The RM 0.50 withdrawal fee only applies if you wish to withdraw cash using your debit card. It does not apply if you pay for your purchases using your debit card.

 

MyDebit Cash Out : Is It Worth Paying The Fee?

The MyDebit Cash Out fee will overwhelmingly affect lower income people, because they are the least able to travel to a bank branch to withdraw their money. They are also less likely to withdraw large amounts of cash at any one time.

So MyDebit Cash Out offers them a convenient way to withdraw money from their bank accounts, as and when they need cash. They will now need to pay for that convenience…

To be sure, the 50 sen fee is cheaper than the RM1 MEPS fee charged for interbank cash withdrawal at the ATM. However, you can only withdraw a maximum of RM500 per transaction through MyDebit Cash Out.

If you wish to withdraw more than RM1,000, it is cheaper to use an ATM from another bank, even if it incurs the MEPS fee.

Of course, if your bank has an ATM nearby, that is your best option – you get to withdraw your money for free!

Read more : MEPS Fee For ATM Cash Withdrawal Now In Effect!

 

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Did Putin Force EU Countries To Pay For Gas In Rubles?!

Did Russian President Vladimir Putin force EU countries to pay for their gas in rubles?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Putin Forced EU Countries To Pay For Gas In Rubles!

People are sharing a comic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, and a story of how he cleverly forced EU countries like Poland, Austria and Bulgaria to pay for gas in rubles.

12 hours ago: Russia shuts down the gas pipeline to Poland and Bulgaria for refusing to pay with the ruble.

10 hours ago: Poland agrees to pay the price of gas with ruble.

6 hours ago: Austria and Bulgaria agree to pay the price of gas in rubles.

5 hours ago: The European Commission licensing European countries to buy gas with ruble.

 

Truth : Putin Did NOT Force EU Countries To Pay For Gas In Rubles!

The truth is this is just more pro-Russian propaganda and FAKE NEWS, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : EU Countries Have Gas Contracts With Gazprom In USD / Euros

First, we need to establish the fact that EU countries like Poland, Austria and Bulgaria have existing gas contracts with Russian energy company Gazprom.

On 23 March 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the Russian central bank, government and Gasprom to demand that “unfriendly countries” must pay for their gas in rubles.

However, as those existing gas contracts are specifically stipulated to be paid in US dollars or Euros, it would be a material breach of contract.

Fact #2 : Poland Refuses To Pay For Gas In Rubles

Gazprom stopped exporting gas to Poland on 27 April 2022, after Poland refused to pay for the gas in rubles.

The Polish state gas company PGNiG, has an existing contract with Gazprom to provide 53% of its gas imports to be paid in Euros. They described the suspension of gas supply as a breach of contract, and said that they will take steps to reinstate the gas supply.

However, Poland continues to refuse to pay Gazprom in rubles.

Fact #3 : Poland Does Not Need Russian Gas

The Polish deputy foreign minister said that Poland has “taken some decisions many years ago to prepare for such a situation“, and can cope without gas from Gazprom.

Poland also formally commissioned a new gas interconnection with Lithuania on 5 May 2022, eventually providing billion cubic metres of LNG per year.

Fact #4 : Bulgaria Refuses To Pay For Gas In Rubles

Gazprom also stopped exporting gas to Bulgaria on 27 April 2022, because Bulgaria refused to pay for the gas in rubles.

Bulgarian Energy Minister Alexander Nikolov said that Gazprom will be in breach of its contract if it stops supplying gas.

However, Bulgaria continues to refuse to pay Gazprom in rubles.

Fact #5 : Bulgaria Does Not Need Russian Gas

Despite relying on Gazprom for 90% of its gas supply, Bulgaria said that it had taken steps to find alternative sources, and that no restrictions on gas consumption was currently required.

Interestingly, Bulgarian gas network operator Bulgartransgaz said that Gazprom was still supplying gas to Bulgaria…

Fact #6 : Austria Refuses To Pay For Gas In Rubles

Austria publicly denounced the fake news that they agreed to pay for Russian gas in rubles. In a Twitter post, Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer said :

Before the fake news of Russian propaganda is spread further here. Of course, OMV will continue to pay for gas delivery from Russian in euros.

Fact #7 : EC Did Not Licence Payment For Gas In Rubles

The fake news also falsely claimed that the European Commission licensed European countries to buy gas from Russia with the ruble.

There is no such “licence”.

In fact, the European Commission has specifically stated that EU companies must pay for Russian gas in euros or US dollars to avoid breaching sanctions.

Fact #8 : GazpromBank Is Converting Payments To Rubles

In an effort to comply with existing contracts, as well as Putin’s decree, Gazprom has been working with EU companies to come up with a workaround :

  • EU companies will deposit their payment in euros or US dollars at GazpromBank.
  • Gazprom agrees that payment has been legally completed.
  • GazpromBank converts the euros or dollars into rubles.
  • GazpromBank transfers the payment in rubles to Gazprom.

This workaround was considered legal by the EC, as both Gazprom and GazpromBank are currently not subject to EU sanctions.

Many pro-Russian and pro-CCP netizens are sharing this fake story on WhatsApp, Telegram, Twitter and Facebook.

Please help us FIGHT FAKE NEWS by sharing this fact check article out!

 

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Crypto Boom Scam Alert : Fake Celebrity Endorsements!

Please watch out for the Crypto Boom scam involving fake celebrity endorsements, and warn your family and friends!

 

Crypto Boom Scam Alert : Fake Celebrity Endorsements!

You may have seen advertisements and posts on Facebook and Twitter, claiming that certain celebrities are sharing the secrets of their success.

Here is a recent example involving Jono Armstrong and Tony Fernandes. It’s an extremely long post, so feel free to skip to the next section for the facts!

NEWS THAT SENT SHOCKWAVES: Jono Armstrong And Tony Fernandes Partnership Is Shaking The Financial World And Big Banks Are Terrified

Big banks are loosing their chokehold of the financial markets. Malaysian citizens are from what private investment banks want off the market. Is it a real deal?

 

Crypto Boom : Yet Another Cryptocurrency Scam

Crypto Boom appears to be yet another “automated trading app”, claiming to use a trading robot to generate “daily ROI of up to 60%”.

Cryptocurrency is unregulated, and these cryptocurrency trading apps are of unknown provenance and ownership.

So unless proven otherwise, you should consider such cryptocurrency apps as SCAMS, including Crypto Boom for these reasons…

Fact #1 : That Malaysiakini Article Is Fake

There is no such Malaysiakini article. It’s completely FABRICATED. You can search Malaysiakini’s website if you don’t believe me.

The website it made to look like Malaysiakini, but does not have a Malaysiakini link, but an AWS cloud server link.

https://malaysia2022.s3.ap-south-1.amazonaws.com/MalaysiaJono.html

The Malaysia2022 website does not even exist. The only page on that server slice appears to be that MalaysiaJono.html page.

Fact #2 : Tony Fernandes Never Partnered With Jono Armstrong

As far as we can tell – Tony Fernandes has never met Jono Armstrong, much less partnered with him to bring Crypto Boom to Malaysia.

There was no such interview of Tony Fernandes and Jono Armstrong on Selamat Page Malaysia. Neither was there ever a threatening call by Farid Alias – the Group President and CEO of Maybank.

Fact #2 : Crypto Boom Is A Technology, Marketing + Advertising Service

While Crypto Boom claims to be an automated trading software that can give you “an average daily ROI of up to 60%“, their fine print states otherwise.

If you scroll down to the bottom of their official website, they clarified that they are merely a “technology, marketing and advertising service“.

They also clarified that they are “only used as a marketing tool by third party advertisers and brokers to receive more customers“.

Crypto Boom also warned, in their fine print, that when you sign up – “a broker is automatically assigned to you“, but that “it is your obligation to check if the Broker applies to all local rules and regulations“.

Crypto Boom is a software created by a development company and does not provide investment or brokerage services.

Crypto Boom does not gain or lose profits based on your trading results and operates as a technology, marketing and advertising service.

Crypto Boom does not operate as a financial services firm and is only used as a marketing tool by third party advertisers and brokers to receive more customers. When you signup to Crypto Boom a broker is automatically assigned to you.

It is your obligation to check if the Broker applies to all local rules and regulations and is regulated in your jurisdiction and is allowed to receive customers from your location. If you find out the Broker that was assigned to you is not duly regulated in your jurisdiction please contact us using the support menu in the software.

Fact #3 : No Celebrity Has Endorsed Crypto Boom

You may see other variants of this fake news, localised to the media in your country, with different celebrities endorsing Crypto Boom.

The truth is – no celebrity or business person of any note has ever publicly endorsed Crypto Boom.

If you do a quick online search, you will note that those celebrities have never mentioned Crypto Boom, much less endorsed it.

The fake story claims that Crypto Boom is backed by Richard Branson, Elon Musk and Bill Gates among others, but Crypto Boom themselves admitted that all those “rumours” are false.

The picture of Richard Branson and Bill Gates that was used in the fake Crypto Boom article was not taken at CES 2022. It was taken at the Grand Challenges Annual Meeting, in London on 26 October 2016.

This is the same kind of fake celebrity endorsements that drive the marketing campaigns of other cryptocurrency scams like Bitcoin Revolution.

Read more : Bitcoin Revolution Fake Celebrity Endorsements Exposed!

Fact #4 : SEC Warned About Such Scams

Many financial regulatory agencies like the SEC are warning investors and the public about fraudulent digital asset and “crypto” trading websites.

There have been many cases of people getting defrauded by such “get rich quick” schemes, including pump-and-dump and rug pull scams.

The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s Office of Customer Education and Outreach (CFTC) warn investors to scrutinize investment opportunities through websites purporting to operate advisory and trading businesses related to digital assets. These websites often contain “red flags” of fraud including claims of high guaranteed returns and promises that the investments carry little or even no risk.

SEC and CFTC staff have recently observed investment scams where fraudsters tout digital asset or “cryptocurrency” advisory and trading businesses. In some cases, the fraudsters claim to invest customers’ funds in proprietary crypto trading systems or in “mining” farms. The fraudsters promise high guaranteed returns (for example, 20-50%) with little or no risk.

After the investors make an investment, typically using a digital asset such as Bitcoin, the fraudsters in some cases stop communicating with the investors altogether. These fraudsters can quickly send your money overseas, with little chance of you being able to get it back. Sometimes the fraudsters direct investors to pay additional costs (such as purported taxes) to withdraw fake “profits” earned from the investment. This is an example of an advance fee fraud scam, where investors are asked to pay a bogus fee in advance of receiving proceeds, money, stock, or warrants.

If anyone tells you that their software or trading service will automatically generate you high ROI, without effort or risk, that’s a scam.

Anyone who develops such a magical system does not need you to invest – they would be keeping it to themselves, and making BILLIONS with no effort or risk.

Please help us fight against such scams – SHARE THIS FACT CHECK with your family and friends!

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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IBM z16 : Industry’s First Quantum-Safe System Explained!

IBM just introduced the z16 system, powered by their new Telum processor with an integrated AI accelerator!

Take a look at the z16, and find out why it is the industry’s first quantum-safe system!

 

IBM z16 : Industry’s First Quantum-Safe System!

On 25 April 2022, IBM officially unveiled their new z16 system in Malaysia – the industry’s first quantum-safe system.

IBM Vice President for Worldwide Sales of IBM Z and LinuxONE, Jose Castano, flew to Kuala Lumpur, to give us an exclusive briefing on the new z16 system, and tell us why it is the industry’s first quantum-safe system.

IBM Z and LinuxONE Security CTO Michael Jordan also briefed us on why quantum-safe computing will be critical for enterprises, as quantum computing improves.

Thanks to its Telum processor, the IBM z16 system delivers low and consistent latency for embedding AI into response time-sensitive transactions. This can enable customers to leverage AI inference to better control the outcome of transactions before they complete.

For example, they can leverage AI inference to mitigate risk in Clearing & Settlement applications, to predict which transactions have high risk exposure, and highlight questionable transactions, to prevent costly consequences.

In a use-case example, one international bank uses AI on IBM Z as part of their credit card authorization process instead of using an off-platform inference solution. As a result, the bank can detect fraud during its credit card transaction authorisation processing.

The IBM z16 will offer better AI inference capacity, thanks to its integrated AI accelerator offering up to 1 ms of latency, expanding use cases that include :

  • tax fraud and organised retail theft detection
  • real-time payments and alternative payment methods, including cryptocurrencies
  • speed up business or consumer loan approvals

As the industry’s first quantum-safe system, the IBM z16 is protected by lattice-based crypto graphs – an approach for constructing security primitives that help protect data and systems against current and future threats.

 

IBM z16 : Powered By The New Telum Processor!

The IBM z16 is built around the new IBM Telum processor, which is specifically designed for secure processing, and real-time AI inference.

Here are the key features of the IBM Telum processor that powers the new IBM z16 system :

  • Fabricated on the 7 nm process technology
  • Has 8 processor cores, clocked at over 5 GHz
  • Each processor core has a dedicated 32 MB private L2 cache
  • The eight 32 MB L2 cache can form a virtual 256 MB L3 cache, and a 2 GB L4 cache.
  • Transparent encryption of main memory, with 8-channel fault tolerant memory interface
  • Integrated AI accelerator with 6 TFLOPS compute capacity
  • Centralised AI accelerator architecture, with direct connection to the cache infrastructure

The Telum processor is designed to enable extremely low latency inference for response-time sensitive workloads. With planned system support for up to 200 TFLOPs, the AI acceleration is also designed to scale up to the requirements of the most demanding workloads.

Thanks to the Telum processor, the IBM z16 can process 300 billion inference requests per day, with just one millisecond of latency.

 

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Fact Check : What China Should Worry About Russia Invading Ukraine!

People are sharing a post by Li Guangman on what China should worry about the Russia-Ukraine War.

Take a look at the viral post, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Li Guangman : What China Should Worry About Russia Invading Ukraine!

Chinese and pro-China netizens have been sharing this post by Chinese blogger Li Guangman on what lessons China should learn from the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

It’s a very long post, so feel free to skip to the next section for the facts…

Some worries brought about by the Russia-Ukraine war (says Li Guangman)

After the outbreak of the Russian-Ukrainian war, the robbery behavior in the entire Western world broke many Chinese people’s perceptions, which made me feel a strong and deep worry.

PS. I have no idea who Li Guangman is, but apparently, some Community Party folks think he’s important, and have been sharing his posts.

 

Li Guangman Is Wrong About Why China Should Worry About Russia Invading Ukraine

I have no idea if Li Guangman actually wrote that post, but one thing is for sure – it is full of misinformation.

I’m not going to focus on what lessons China should learn from the Russian invasion of Ukraine, but I will show you what can be easily and factually proven false in that viral post.

Fact #1 : Corporations Do Not Sanction Countries

Li Guangman falsely claimed (intentionally?) that Internet service providers and social media platforms announced sanctions against Russia after they invaded Ukraine.

That never happened, because corporations don’t issue sanctions. Those corporations only decided to stop working with Russia, after Western countries announced sanctions against Russia.

  • Cogent Communications, which is the second-largest Internet connectivity provider in Russia, terminated their contracts there on 4 March 2022 to comply with EU Regulation 2022/350.
  • Lumen terminated their services in Russia on 8 March 2022, to comply with sanction requirements.

Fact #2 : Corporations Chose To Stop Doing Business In Russia

Many corporations decided to stop doing business in Russia, mainly because they are public-listed companies that are answerable to their shareholders, and their customers worldwide.

For many, the limited Russian business they conduct is not worth risking their worldwide business, especially when the rest of the world is stridently against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

  • Automotive : Ford, General Motors, Toyota, Volkswagen and Nissan
  • Aviation : Boeing and Airbus
  • Finance : Visa, Mastercard, American Express, PayPal, Western Union, Moody’s, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup
  • F&B : Burger King, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Nestle, PepsiCo, Starbucks, Yum Brands (KFC and Pizza Hut)
  • Energy : BP, Exxon, Shell, Equinox
  • Big Tech : Airbnb, Amazon Web Services, Apple, Hitachi, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, Netflix, Nintendo, Sony, Spotify, TikTok
  • Hotels : Hyatt, Hilton, Marriott

There is also the issue of sanctions – Western sanctions may also prohibit them from selling their products and services to Russia and/or Belarus.

Fact #3 : US Did Not Launch “Disconnection Action” Against Russia

Li Guangman also falsely claimed (intentionally?) that the US launched disconnection action against Russia. That never happened.

The easiest way to do that would be to get ICANN to remove Russian domains from the Internet, which would prevent anyone from accessing any server in Russia.

However, the United States never made such a request. Only Ukraine asked ICANN to do this, but ICANN refused their request.

It is also a very silly claim to make, because it actually benefits the US and Western nations to maintain Internet connectivity to Russia, which allows them to reach out to Russian citizens with the truth.

Fact #4 : Russia Blocked Western Social Media

In fact, Li Guangman (intentionally?) left out the fact that the Russian government itself blocked or restricted access to Western social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

The truth is – it does not benefit Russia to let their citizens access uncensored information about their invasion of Ukraine. That’s why they blocked access to Western social media platforms.

This is where Russia is attempting to mimic China in its control of what information citizens can access. China is the undisputed leader in Internet censorship.

Fact #5 : Russia Prepared To Cut Itself Off The Internet

Li Guangman also (intentionally?) left out the fact that Russia was more than prepared to cut itself from the Internet.

The Russians started working on the ability to cut themselves from the Internet in the early 2010s, testing that ability in 2019 and in subsequent years.

Russian President Vladimir Putin also signed into law, a set of 2019 amendments called the Sovereign Internet Law (Закон о «суверенном интернете»), that lets the government cut Russia off the rest of the Internet.

Fact #6 : SWIFT Is Controlled By EU, Not US

SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications) messaging network is not American, but Belgian, based in La Hulpe, Belgium.

As a cooperative society under Belgian law, SWIFT is owned by its members – financial institutions, not countries. In fact, its current chairman is Yawar Shah of Pakistan, while its CEO is Javier Pérez-Tasso of Spain.

Li Guangman (intentionally?) forgot to point out that the United States and Britain had been pushing for Russia to be banned from SWIFT, but EU nations refused earlier.

In the end, the European Union agreed to remove seven Russian banks from SWIFT, instead of the entire country.

The EU also excluded Sberbank (largest bank in Russia) and Gazprombank from the SWIFT removal, so they could still buy oil from Russia.

All proof that SWIFT is controlled by the EU, not the US.

Fact #7 : SWIFT Is Just A Messaging Service

SWIFT is a messaging system that securely transfers “messages containing the payment instructions between financial institutions involved in a transaction“.

It is not a payment system, and therefore, does not hold any funds. Neither does it perform cleaning or settlement services.

After a payment instruction has been initiated through SWIFT, the corresponding financial institutions must then “settle” the transaction through a payment system, like TARGET2 in Europe.

Fact #8 : SWIFT Removal Is Only An Inconvenience

While removal from SWIFT is a big deal, it is not the end of the world for those seven Russian banks, because it is merely a messaging system.

Banks can use alternative methods like faxes (yes, they still exist!) or alternative messaging systems like Russia’s own SPFS, China’s CIPS and India’s SFMS.

  • VEB is largely focused on domestic projects, and uses SPFS for overseas transactions
  • Sovcombank says that other sanctions already block it from making overseas payments, so the SWIFT removal has no impact
  • Promsvyazbank said that it had prepared for SWIFT removal, so it will not have a significant impact
  • VTB and Otkritie said that they would not be impacted

So Li Guangman’s claim that SWIFT removal is a weapon of war is… absurd and melodramatic.

Fact #9 : No One Ever Said Satellites Are Safe From Attacks

Li Guangman also falsely claimed (intentionally?) that Western nations had earlier claimed that “satellites are safe and will not be attacked“.

No country ever said that. In fact, the United States Space Force was formed, in part, to protect US satellite communications.

The US Space Force Vice Chief of Space Operations, General David Thompson even shared in November 2021 that :

Both China and Russia are regularly attacking US satellites with non-kinetic means, including lasers, radio frequency jammers, and cyber attacks… every single day

Li Guangman seems incredibly naive and ignorant about daily attacks on satellites, because the alternative explanation would be that he knew but intentionally chose to mislead you.

Fact #10 : Anonymous Is Not A Government Organisation

Li Guangman falsely claimed (intentionally?) that Anonymous is “some government organisations”.

  • Anonymous is a decentralised collective of anonymous hactivists… hence, its name.
  • It is not a government organisation.
  • It has previously attacked several Western governments, including the United States
  • Dozens of people associated with Anonymous cyberattacks have been arrested in the US, UK, Australia, the Netherlands, Spain, India and Turkey.

This is common knowledge, so it is peculiar that Li Guangman is so ignorant about Anonymous… or believes that people are stupid enough to believe him.

Fact #11 : Anonymous Did Not Hack Russian Space Agency

Technically, Anonymous did not hack the Russian Space Agency (Roscosmos), which was really hacked by their affiliates – NB65 and v0g3lSec.

They never shut down the Russian space control centre, or took any Russian satellite out of control. All those are lies that Li Guangman apparently concocted.

Roscosmos Chief Executive, Dmitry Rogozin also denied the claim, saying that “The information of these scammers and petty swindlers is not true. All our space activity control centers are operating normally.

So you have to ask yourself – why would Li Guangman lie about this? These are all on public record. Does he believe that you are so gullible that you would believe everything he says?

Read more : Anonymous Affiliates Are Attacking Russian Space Agency!

Fact #12 : Sanctioned Assets Were Frozen, Not Seized

Li Guangman falsely claimed (intentionally?) that the assets of Russian government and private individuals were looted (stolen) by Western banks / governments.

As part of sanctions against the Russian government, Western countries also sanctioned certain Russian individuals, including the super-rich Russian oligarchs.

However, their assets were frozen, not seized. At least, not yet.

All individuals sanctioned by the US Treasury Department, for example, will have their assets frozen. Those assets would be locked up, and cannot be sold or accessed in any way.

The owner has to get a licence from the department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control to do anything – even to just pay property taxes, or fix a leaking roof.

That’s different from the government actually seizing the frozen assets – this requires the government to first prove that they are linked to a crime. Until that happens, the assets have not been “looted”.

According to Michael Parker, head of the anti-money laundering and sanctions practice at Ferrari & Associates :

These cases need to be built, there has to be a showing of some sort of underlying theory of forfeiture, there has to be a reason that they are forfeited. The mere fact that somebody the United States has said is a target owns this asset isn’t enough to form a basis of seizure under U.S. law.

Fact #13 : Only Assets Of Sanctioned Individuals Were Frozen

Li Guangman also falsely claimed (intentionally?) that ALL assets belonging to the Russian government and private individuals were stolen by Western banks / government.

Not only were they not stolen, only assets belonging to sanctioned individuals and the Russian government were frozen. The assets of other Russian individuals were not affected.

Chinese netizens need not be overly concerned about their money stashed in Western banks.

Even if China decides to do something similarly evil like Russia, and invade another country, Western banks will only be forced to freeze the assets of those in power, like Chinese President Xi Jinping, for example.

Fact #14 : Less Than US$1 Trillion Frozen So Far

Li Guangman also falsely claimed (intentionally?) that Western countries froze US$8 trillion worth of assets.

On 5 March, UK Minister Jacob Rees-Mogg tweeted a chart that showed the value of Russian bank assets that were being sanctioned. That was actually criticised as being overly optimistic, but let’s assume it’s true.

That’s a total of £537.6 billion pounds, or US$703.7 billion. Even if you add US$15 billion of assets targeted by sanctioning seven Russian oligarchs, the total is still under US$719 billion.

So Li Guangman overstated the amount of sanctioned Russian assets by some 11X… if not more.

Fact #15 : Switzerland Only Adopts Military Neutrality

Li Guangman appears to be confused by the concept of “Swiss neutrality”, which refers to military neutrality – Switzerland will not be involved in armed or political conflicts between other states.

Switzerland, however, pursues an active foreign policy, and is frequently involved in peace-building processes globally.

Fact #16 : Switzerland Has Adopted EU Sanctions Since 1998

Li Guangman appears to be living in the past, claiming that Switzerland abandoned its neutrality to sanction Russia.

While Switzerland declined to be part of EU, it has been adopting EU-only sanctions for the past 24 years!

  • 1998 : EU sanctions against Yugoslavia
  • 2000 : EU sanctions against Myanmar
  • 2002 : EU sanctions against Zimbabwe
  • 2006 : EU sanctions against Uzbekistan and Belarus
  • 2022 : EU sanctions against Russia and Belarus

Fact #17 : Tech Companies Have To Comply With Sanctions

Li Guangman appears to be surprised that tech companies are complying with sanctions.

Of course, tech companies have to comply with sanctions. If they don’t, they would be legally liable and punished with fines and other legal actions.

In fact, Russia just announced sanctions against a wide range of American officials, including US President Joe Biden. They are expecting companies to comply with those sanctions as well.

We should also remember that China imposed sanctions of her own on US individuals and organisations, and expected companies to comply with their sanctions.

Did he expect companies to only comply with Russian and Chinese sanctions, but not those from Western countries?

Fact #18 : Russia Started The Conflict

Li Guangman claimed that Russia invading of Ukraine is “a real all-out war waged by the entire Western bloc against Russia“. What utter nonsense.

Western nations have repeatedly warned the world that Russia was planning to invade Ukraine since November 2021, even as Russia and pro-Russia forces derided them.

As early as December 2021, US President Joe Biden even threatened Russia with sweeping Western economic sanctions if it invaded Ukraine.

Russia repeatedly denied it was going to invade Ukraine, dismissing those warnings as “hysteria”. But they were lying, and ultimately invaded Ukraine on 24 February 2022.

So let me be clear to Li Guangman and his supporters – the invasion of Ukraine was a war that Russia actively chose to initiate.

This was not a war “waged by the entire Western bloc against Russia“. This was a war that Russia waged against Ukraine.

Until today, the United States and NATO have repeatedly refused to directly defend Ukraine against attacks by Russia. So to call it an “all-out war” is also ludicrous.

This fake news appears to be part of the disinformation campaign conducted by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) to support Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Please help us FIGHT FAKE NEWS by sharing this fact check out!

 

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He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Did Western Countries Just Steal $600 Billion From Russia?!

Did Western countries just steal US$600 BILLION from Russia?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Western Countries Just Stole $600 Billion From Russia!

Pro-China groups and supporters are sharing this post on social media and WhatsApp, claiming that Western Countries took opportunity of the Ukraine War to steal US$600 billion from Russia.

It’s a long post, so feel free to skip to the next section for the facts!

Good morning. Happy Monday
Those who have read English literature would be familiar with the saying ” A rose by any other name would smell just as sweet”.

What they may not know is that thievery by any other name ,as in sanction, is also thievery.

Of course the West would want to sanitize and justify their actions by avoiding the term “thievery” when they stole Afghanistan’s US$ 7 billion last year. Today they are stealing US$600 billion from Russia’s Central Bank apart from other assets belonging to Russian individuals.

 

Truth : Western Countries Did Not Steal $600 Billion From Russia!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created and/or propagated by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : US Did Not Steal US$7 Billion From Afghanistan

The US government did not steal US$7 billion from Afghanistan.

This false claim is based on an executive order by the Biden Administration to freeze approximately US$7 billion worth of US-based assets owned by Afghanistan’s central bank – Da Afghanistan Bank (DAB).

The US Feds are holding onto those assets, so they are not actually being taken or used by the US government.

  • US$3.5 billion will be allocated for “the benefit of the Afghan people”.
  • Another US$3.5 billion will be held, as they are subject to “ongoing litigation by US victims of terrorism”.

In essence, the Biden Administration is blocking the Taliban government from using the assets to purchase what they don’t believe would be in “the benefit of the Afghan people”. Chief on their mind would be weapons, and financing of terrorist activities.

One may argue that the Taliban is the Afghan government of the day – as reprehensible as they may be, and therefore have the right to access all of that money.

That may well be true, but it does not mean that the US government stole the money. After all, they did not take or use it for their own purposes.

I should also point out that the US contributed at least $130 billion to Afghanistan, so it would seem silly for them to “steal” $7 billion from Afghanistan, wouldn’t it?

Read more : Did US Government Steal 7 Billion Dollars From Afghanistan?!
Read more : Did US Steal Gold + Oil From Iraq Worth Trillions Of Dollars?!

Fact #2 : US + Allies Froze $400 Billion Of Russian Assets

Right after Russia invaded Ukraine, the US and its European allies sanctioned Russia’s central bank, preventing it from accessing most of its foreign reserves.

Russia had built up about $630 billion worth of foreign currency and gold reserves in various countries, but the US government and its allies froze about $400 billion of those reserves.

So right off the bat, the claim that the US government stole $600 billion from the Russian bank is wrong.

Not only did the wumao writer (intentionally?) get the figure wrong, it was not just the US government. The European Union also sanctioned the Russian central bank.

Fact #3 : Russian Reserves Were Frozen, Not Seized

The foreign currency and gold reserves of the Russian central bank were FROZEN, not seized.

That blocks the Russian central bank from accessing them in any way, but does allow the US government or any other country to take control of those assets, or use them.

For a Western government to seize any frozen asset, they would have to first prove that the assets are linked to a crime. Until that happens, they too cannot access those assets.

These cases need to be built, there has to be a showing of some sort of underlying theory of forfeiture, there has to be a reason that they are forfeited. The mere fact that somebody the United States has said is a target owns this asset isn’t enough to form a basis of seizure under U.S. law.

That’s the difference between “law-based order” where everyone follows the same rules, and “autocratic order” like in China, where the government can and have arbitrarily seized assets belonging to individuals that have fallen out of favour.

Fact #4 : Only Assets Of Sanctioned Individuals Were Frozen

The post falsely claimed that assets belonging to Russian individuals were also stolen.

Not only were they not stolen, only assets belonging to sanctioned individuals were frozen. The assets of other Russian individuals were not affected.

Chinese netizens need not be overly concerned about their money stashed in Western banks.

Even if China decides to do something similarly evil like Russia, and invade another country, Western banks will only be forced to freeze the assets of those in power, like Chinese President Xi Jinping, for example.

Fact #5 : English Piracy Has No Relevance To Spanish Abuses

The viral post falsely claimed that English pirates attacked Spanish galleons filled with gold and silver, because they looked down on the native people of the Caribbeans and Americas.

That’s an astonishingly silly claim. Pirates attacked Spanish galleons because they were after the cargo, not because they had something against the native people.

Whatever the pirates may think of the native people is irrelevant. They were not remotely interested in the abuses that the Spanish conducted in their theft of gold and silver from the Incas.

This is no different from how robbers are only interested in taking your money, and not at all interested in whether you earned your money through hard work, or stole it from someone else.

Fact #6 : Russian Assets Only Frozen After Invasion Of Ukraine

The viral post falsely suggested that the Russian invasion of Ukraine was planned by the West, as a way to steal Russia’s money.

Not only was the money not stolen at all, Western countries had repeatedly threatened sanctions if Russia invaded Ukraine.

The West tried to prevent Russia from invading Ukraine. Russia explicitly chose to ignore their threats, and invade Ukraine.

Fact #6 : China Has Publicly + Unilaterally Threatened Taiwan

The viral post falsely suggested that the West is planning to target China next for its riches, by goading China to shoot first at Taiwan.

That’s another silly claim. The West does not need to goad China to do something that it is already doing – repeatedly provoking tensions with Taiwan, even publicly threatening military action.

China and its 50 Cent Army have also been actively creating and disseminating fake news and threats not just against Taiwan, but against other countries and Western nations.

Read more : Did China Threaten West With Waterloo In South China Sea?
Read more : US Withdraws After Chinese Jamming Attacks?

Fact #7 : US Cannot Refuse To Repay Its Loans

The writer falsely claimed that the US will sanction China’s ownership of $1 trillion worth of US debt if China attacks Taiwan. That’s nonsense.

China has steadily purchased US Treasury securities as an investment, and a way to push down the value of the renminbi (RMB).

These securities are backed by the “full faith and credit” of the United States, and is considered one of the world’s lowest-risk investments, because they have never defaulted on a payment.

If the United States defaults and refuses to pay China what it’s owed, it would suffer a massive hit to its reputation and credit rating, and the yield rate of its debt would skyrocket.

Even though China owns $1.065 trillion worth of US debt (as of October 2021), that is only 3.68% of the $28.9 trillion US national debt.

It would be idiotic for the US to risk over 96% of its rock-solid bonds, by refusing to repay China for its ownership of those bonds.

This fake news appears to be part of the disinformation campaign conducted by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) to support Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

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Did US Government Steal 7 Billion Dollars From Afghanistan?!

Did the US government just steal 7 BILLION DOLLARS from the poor people in Afghanistan?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : US Government Just Stole 7 Billion Dollars From Afghanistan!

Pro-China groups and supporters are actively claiming that the US government stole 7 billion dollars from the poor people in Afghanistan, even while China donates food to them.

Here are a few example posts on social media.

闭上臭嘴。中国给阿富汗捐赠了免费的粮食五次,美国没收了阿富汗70亿美元。
Shut up stupid. China has donated free food to Afghanistan five times, and the United States has confiscated $7 billion from Afghanistan

The US government invaded Afghanistan in the form of washing powder for ten years! After the United States robbed oil gold, it quietly left! Left homeless children and women! The United States still deducted $7 billion from Afghanistan‘s reserves! American government robbers!

2001年美国打着反恐名义侵略阿富汗,2021年撤离阿富汗 掠夺阿富汗人民70亿美元血汗钱
In 2001, the US invaded Afghanistan in the name of counter-terrorism, and in 2021, it will withdraw from the country, plundering the Afghan people’s hard-earned money worth us $7 billion
臭不要脸 Shameless

China Denounces US as ‘Bandits’ for Seizing $7 Billion as Afghans Starve “Global outrage has continued to grow since the Biden administration stole Afghanistan‘s foreign reserves with nearly 23 million Afghans facing acute hunger.”

 

Truth : US Government Did Not Steal 7 Billion Dollars From Afghanistan!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created and/or propagated by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : US Froze 7 Billion Dollars Worth Of Afghan Central Bank Assets

First, let us get this right – the US government did not steal US$7 billion from Afghanistan.

This false claim is based on an executive order by the Biden Administration to freeze approximately US$7 billion worth of US-based assets owned by Afghanistan’s central bank – Da Afghanistan Bank (DAB).

As part of our ongoing work to address the humanitarian and economic crisis in Afghanistan, President Biden signed an Executive Order (E.O.) to help enable certain U.S.-based assets belonging to Afghanistan’s central bank, Da Afghanistan Bank (“DAB”), to be used to benefit the Afghan people.

The E.O. will block property of DAB held in the United States by U.S. financial institutions and require U.S. financial institutions to transfer this property into a consolidated account held at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Fact #2 : US Did Not Take / Use The 7 Billion Dollars

The US Feds are holding onto those assets, so they are not actually being taken or used by the US government.

  • US$3.5 billion will be allocated for “the benefit of the Afghan people”.
  • Another US$3.5 billion will be held, as they are subject to “ongoing litigation by US victims of terrorism”.

In essence, the Biden Administration is blocking the Taliban government from using the assets to purchase what they don’t believe would be in “the benefit of the Afghan people”. Chief on their mind would be weapons, and financing of terrorist activities.

One may argue that the Taliban is the Afghan government of the day – as reprehensible as they may be, and therefore have the right to access all of that money.

That may well be true, but it does not mean that the US government stole the money. After all, they did not take or use it for their own purposes.

Fact #3 : US Contributed $130 Billion To Afghanistan

Since their 2001 invasion toppled the Taliban government, the US government has massively funded the reconstruction and development of Afghanistan.

They spent at least $130 billion in funds for security, governance, development and humanitarian needs in Afghanistan.

The Afghan government was also highly dependent on aid, which contributed 40% of its GDP, and 75% of its public expenditure. Most of it came from the US government.

No doubt the US government felt that it at least has the right to dictate what the 7 billion dollars should be used for.

Fact #4 : US Continues To Contribute To Afghanistan

What most people are not aware is the US government has contributed, and continues to contribute, hundreds of millions of dollars to Afghanistan since the Taliban regained power.

On October 28, 2021, the US government announced more than $144 million in additional humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan.

Today, the United States announced more than $144 million in humanitarian assistance to the people affected by the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.

This funding from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the U.S. Department of State brought total U.S. humanitarian aid in Afghanistan and for Afghan refugees in the region to nearly $474 million in 2021 alone.

Then the US government announced more than $308 million in humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan on January 11, 2022.

The new contribution from the United States will provide life-saving aid for the most vulnerable, to include women, girls, minority populations, and people with disabilities.

This assistance includes food and nutrition assistance; support for health care facilities and mobile health teams; winterization programs—including the provision of emergency cash grants, shelter kits, heaters, blankets, and warm clothing; and logistics and transportation support to ensure that aid workers and critical relief supplies can make it to the hardest to reach areas.

Fact #5 : Chinese Contribution To Afghanistan Is Paltry

China announced humanitarian aid worth 200 million yuan in September 2021.

While that sounds impressive, it is a paltry $31.4 million – just 4% of what the US has (so far) contributed in 2021 and 2022.

In fact, China is contributing far less than Japan, which has far less economic and geopolitical interest in Afghanistan. Even Sweden has pledged to donate almost twice as much as China.

As this table shows, the truth is quite different from what Chinese propaganda want you to believe.

Country Aid Pledged
To Afghanistan
United States $421 million
European Union $277 million
Germany $182 million
United Kingdom $113 million
France $80 million
Denmark $74 million
Japan $60 million
Sweden $53 million
China $31.4 million
Netherlands $30 million
Canada $27 million

Fact #6 : China Seem More Interested In Publicity

Even though the Chinese pledged the aid in September 2021, they only managed to deliver five shipments of food, medical and humanitarian aid, up until 9 April 2022.

What you will notice though is that each delivery is accompanied by its own distribution ceremony for photo opportunities, and coverage in Chinese media outlets like CGTN, Xinhua, Global Times, etc.

From their constant publicity, you would think that the Chinese alone are supporting the entire Afghanistan on their mighty shoulders.

The truth is – China has always been miserly in its humanitarian aid, and the Chinese know it.

That’s why they often hype up their contribution, even shamelessly hyping up the sale of Chinese COVID-19 vaccines as a contribution to the world.

By casting aspersions on the United States, they deflect criticism for their lack of support of the Afghan people.

Read more : Did China provide 2 billion vaccine doses to the world?

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Did US Steal Gold + Oil From Iraq Worth Trillions Of Dollars?!

Did the US steal tens of trillions of dollars worth of gold and oil from Iraq?

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : US Stole Gold + Oil From Iraq Worth Trillions Of Dollars!

People are sharing pictures of US soldiers posing with gold bars, as evidence that the United States sold gold and oil from Iraq worth tens of trillions of dollars!

These pictures have been revived as part of the information warfare surrounding the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Here the US thieves in Iraq. Bringing democracy aka stealing a country’s gold. Same thing they want to do in Russia. But Russia is no Iraq or Libya.

The #US ransacked and plundered the whole of #Iraq. Banks, museums, all of their gold reserves. The US is the biggest gang of thiefs in the whole history. They have raped most of the planet in the las 50 years. #Ukraine #UkraineRussianWar #UkraineRussiaWar #Russia #Putin #NATO

🇺🇸 “liberates” gold & oil while 🇷🇺 liberates humans.

#Denaƶification & #Demilitarization of #UkroNaƶiLand

 

Truth : US Did Not Steal Gold + Oil From Iraq At All!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created and/or propagated to deflect criticism of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : US Did Not Steal $30 Trillion Of Iraqi Oil

Claims that the US stole $30 trillion worth of oil from Iraq is false. The United States did lose track of 8.7 billion dollars worth of Iraqi funds though.

After the invasion of Iraq concluded, Iraqi oil was sold to help fund the Development Fund of Iraq (DFI).

Other sources of funds include surplus funds (about USD 10 billion) from the UN Oil-For-Food Program, and the sale of seized Iraqi assets. The United States did not truck away Iraqi oil, as claimed.

In July 2010, the US Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) discovered that the US Department of Defense could not account properly for USD 8.7 billion of DFI funds.

This led the Iraqi Parliament to request the United Nation’s help in demanding that the US return $17 billion of “oil money” that it said was stolen from the Iraqi people :

All the indications are that the institutions of the United States of America committed financial corruption by stealing the money of the Iraqi people, which was allocated to develop Iraq, (and) that it was about $17 billion.
… Our committee decided to send this issue to you … to look into it and restore the stolen money.

There is no evidence that the unaccounted money was repatriated to the United States, or officially taken by the United States.

Even assuming that it was not poor accounting and all of the $8.7 billion was truly stolen, that is a far cry (0.029%) from the $30 trillion that was “allegedly” stolen.

It is also rendered ludicrous by the fact that the United States spent USD 60 billion in the reconstruction of Iraq.

Also consider the fact that Iraqi oil production only reached 4.4 million barrels per day in 2016. Assuming an average sale price of USD 60 per barrel, it would take them 311 years to sell enough oil to make $30 trillion.

Stealing $30 trillion worth of oil would require 1.7 billion oil trucks, or 46,000 of these trucks every day for 100 years!

Fact #2 : US Did Not Steal $20 Trillion Of Iraqi Gold

The United States also did not steal gold from Iraq, certainly not $20 trillion worth of gold!

All those photos of US soldiers with Iraqi gold bars are genuine, but they only show them taking photos with the gold they seized in Iraq.

The Iraqi gold bars (as well as currency and other valuables) that US soldiers seized were transported to the US Army’s headquarters in Kuwait.

There, they were examined by the Secret Service and/or the US Department of Treasury to determine their authenticity and value, before being returned to the Central Iraqi Treasury or the Development Fund of Iraq (DFI).

This is a picture of Lt. Col. Scott Schmidt, who was in charge of the 230th Finance Battalion. The battalion’s job was to seize Iraqi assets like currency, gold bars and other valuables.

In 2003, Iraq had under 6 tonnes of gold reserves, worth less than $70 million. So how can the United States possibly steal 20 trillion dollars worth of gold from Iraq? $20 trillion worth of gold would weigh at least 1,714,285 tonnes in 2003.

Guess how much gold mankind has ever mined in history? Only 190,040 tonnes as of 2019 – which is 11% of what people are claiming that the United States stole from Iraq.

As of October 2019, the value of all the gold in the world was just USD 9.2 trillion – 46% of what the conspiracy theory claims the United States stole from Iraq… and that’s only because gold prices have gone up considerably.

Even with the much higher gold price, it would take an additional 90 years of mining gold before the entire world has $20 trillion worth of gold for the US to steal.

Now that you know the truth, please help us FIGHT FAKE NEWS by sharing this fact check out!

 

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Watch Out For Nestle 2022 Anniversary Phishing Scam!

Please watch out for the Nestle 2022 Anniversary phishing scam!

Find out why it is just a SCAM, and WARN your family and friends!

 

Nestle 2022 Anniversary Phishing Scam Alert!

People are now sharing the Nestle 2022 Anniversary message on WhatsApp (translated into English) :

CONGRATULATIONS!

Your family has been chosen to receive a lucky drag for the Nestle 2022 Anniversary at the Nestle office.

This contest has been approved by the Malaysian court / police, with the cooperation of Bank Negera Malaysia (BNM).

The link attached to the a website with the following instructions :

  1. Winners must keep the PIN-CEK number as evidence for winner verification and prize collection
  2. There are two ways to submit the contest form – through WhatsApp or this website.
  3. The contest form must be completed with your details. Incomplete forms will be rejected by the sponsor without notice.
  4. Every valid application will be shortlisted. There is no limit to the number of applications.
  5. First Prize Winner : RM10,500
    Second Prize Winner : RM9,300
    Third Prize Winner : RM8,500
  6. To redeem your prize, just use your WhatsApp to :
    a) Fill in the Nestle winner application number
    b) Fill in your full name and identity card number
    c) Attach a clear picture of your BANK ATM CARD – front and back
    d) Go to the nearest ATM machine, and WhatsApp the details above to +60124181128

 

Nestle 2022 Anniversary Phishing Scam : How Does It Work?

The Nestle 2022 Anniversary phishing scam is DANGEROUS. Please warn your family and friends to AVOID it.

Fact #1 : There Is No Such Nestle Giveaway!

There is no such anniversary giveaway by Nestle Malaysia. There is no reason for Nestle Malaysia to give out so much money.

They are a business, not a charity. They are in the business of selling you products, not giving you money.

Businesses do sponsor giveaway contests, but they are generally low value. Nestle Malaysia, for example, is currently giving away RM30 Shopee vouchers.

Fact #2 : Nestle Would Not Use Free Websites

Nestle is a large multinational company. It would not be using free website services like Wix.

Nestle Malaysia has its own website (https://www.nestle.com.my/) and Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/Nestle.Malaysia) where they post official contests and promotions.

Always verify if a contest is genuine by visiting the official website / social media page.

Fact #3 : Nestle Would Never Ask For Pictures Of Your ATM Card!

Nestle, and any legitimate brand, would NEVER ask you to send them pictures of your bank ATM card!

Sending the pictures of your ATM card will allow them to clone the card, or trick bank staff into giving the scammers access to your bank account.

NEVER EVER SEND ANYONE PICTURES OF YOUR BANK ATM CARD!

Fact #4 : Nestle Would Never Ask You To Go To An ATM

No legitimate contest would require you to go to an ATM machine to receive money.

NEVER TRUST ANYONE WHO ASKS YOU TO GO TO AN ATM MACHINE.

Fact #5 : Nestle Would Never Ask For Your PIN / TAC

Nestle would never ask you for your ATM card’s PIN or any TAC number you may receive.

Giving out those details is how scammers get access to your bank account.

NEVER GIVE OUT YOUR PIN OR TAC NUMBER!

Fact #6 : This Lets Scammers Withdraw Money From Your Bank Account

I know many of us are in dire straits during this COVID-19 pandemic, having lost jobs, income or even loved ones.

Unfortunately, scammers are counting on our desperation to prey on us, using such anniversary scams.

This particular Nestle 2022 Anniversary Scam is a real danger, because it will allow scammers to gain access to your bank account and withdraw money.

Also watch out for the other anniversary scams that I have covered over the years :

Please WARN your family and friends about these scams!

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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MEPS Fee For ATM Cash Withdrawal Now In Effect!

Please take note – all banks in Malaysia have reinstated the MEPS fee for ATM cash withdrawals!

Here is what you need to know!

 

MEPS Fee For ATM Cash Withdrawal Waived To Reduce Infection Risk

Bank Negera earlier announced that the MEPS fee for cash withdrawal across the country would be waived from 6 April 2020 until the end of the Movement Control Order (MCO / PKP).

This waiver was designed to reduce people’s movement, allowing them to withdraw cash from the nearest bank, rather than travelling to a specific bank.

It would also allow people to switch to ATMs from a different bank, if there is a queue at their bank; thus reducing the risk of infection.

 

MEPS Fee For ATM Cash Withdrawal Reinstated!

On 15 December 2021, banks in Malaysia announced that the MEPS fee of RM1 for each interbank cash withdrawal at the ATM will be reinstated, effective 1 February 2022.

The policy applies to all banks in Malaysia, which means you will no longer be able to withdraw cash from a different bank’s ATM for free.

Starting today – 1 February 2022, each interbank cash withdrawal will incur a MEPS fee of RM1.

Please note that the MEPS fee is only for INTERBANK cash withdrawal. It does NOT apply if you are withdrawing from the ATM’s bank itself.

For example, if you are using a Maybank ATM to withdraw cash from your UOB bank account, you will be charged that MEPS fee of RM1 per transaction. You will not be charged the fee, if you are using that Maybank ATM to withdraw cash from your Maybank account.

Below are three examples of the announcements.

Maybank

Kindly be informed that effective 1 February 2022, the ATM interbank cash withdrawal fee of RM1.00 will be reinstated by banks.

Maybank customers can continue to perform cash withdrawal transactions at Maybank’s ATM for free*

* Customers who opt for non-annual fee will be entitled to eight free cash withdrawal transactions per month for Basic Accounts and four free cash withdrawal transactions per month for Non-basic Accounts.

CIMB

Dear valued customers,

Effective 1 February 2022, a transaction fee of RM1.00 will be charged for interbank cash withdrawal transactions performed other than at CIMB Bank/CIMB Islamic ATMs/self-service terminals.

You can continue to perform cash withdrawal transactions at our ATMs/self-service terminals  without fee.

RHB

Dear Valued Customers,

Kindly be informed that effective 1 February 2022, RM1 fee will be charged to RHB Debit Cardholders for each interbank cash withdrawal at ATM of another bank. Customers may continue to perform cash withdrawal with no additional fee at any RHB Bank ATMs.

Thank you.

 

Reinstatement Of MEPS Fee At ATM : Bad Idea For Now…

It is unfortunate that the MEPS fee for interbank cash withdrawal has been reinstated so soon. The COVID-19 pandemic is far from over, with Malaysia still recording four to five thousand new cases every day.

This move will likely lead to overcrowding and long queues at certain banks, especially at the end of every month.

If you have more than one bank account, you can transfer your money from one bank to another bank for free online. This will allow you to select the bank with the most convenient ATM to withdraw from, for free.

But if you only have one bank account, you should protect yourself by making sure you are fully-vaccinated (with the booster dose as well), and strictly follow COVID-19 precautions while queuing up.

 

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He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Maybank Online + Banking Services Up + Running!

Maybank online and banking services were temporarily down, and are now up and running!

Here is what you need to know…

 

Maybank Online + Banking Services Temporarily Down!

At 3:55 PM on 17 January 2022, Maybank sent out an alert that these online and banking services were temporarily down :

  • Maybank2U web and mobile banking services
  • ATMs and self-service terminals (SSTs)
  • branch banking
  • debit card usage

Maybank credit card were unaffected by this downtime.

Just over an hour later at 4:58 PM, Maybank announced that they restored services!

Maybank did not reveal the reasons why those online and banking services went down. However, the downtime does not appear to apply to everyone using the Maybank2U online portal.

When I checked at 4:10 PM, I managed to log into two Maybank personal accounts and a company account. I was also able to transfer money from a Maybank account to another bank.

Fortunately, they were able to restore services very quickly – in just over an hour.

 

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Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Can SIM Swap Attack Empty Bank Accounts Without Warning?

Can a SIM swap attack clear out your bank accounts without warning?

Take a look at the viral warning, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : SIM Swap Attack Can Empty Bank Accounts Without Warning!

This message has gone viral on social media and WhatsApp, warning about a new high tech fraud called SIM Swap Fraud that can empty bank accounts without warning.

The message includes a link to a Straits Times report about a young couple who lost $120,000 in a fake text message scam targeting OCBC Bank customers.

Your BANK Account could be Emptied without an Alert!

Dear All, Please let’s be very careful.. There is a new HIGH TECH FRAUD in town called the SIM SWAP FRAUD, and hundreds of persons are already VICTIMS.

 

Truth : SIM Swap Attack Are Real, But Don’t Work Like That

The truth is – SIM swap attacks are real and very dangerous, but they do not work like the viral message claims.

Here is what you need to know about the viral message, and SIM swap attacks.

Fact #1 : SIM Swap Attacks Are Not New

SIM swap attacks are really not that new. They have been around at least since 2015.

Fact #2 : Viral Message Is Partly Fake

The viral message is correct about the risk of SIM swap attacks, but pretty much wrong about everything else.

In fact, the method by which the SIM swap attack works is completely made up. So the viral message is really FAKE NEWS.

Fact #3 : Straits Times Article Was Not About SIM Swap

The fake news creator added a link to a Straits Time article, to mislead you.

That’s because the article isn’t about a SIM swap attack, but a phishing attack, where the victim received an SMS  with a link that took him to a fake website that “looked exactly like the OCBC login page“.

The victim then keyed in his bank login details, thus handing over control of his bank account to the scammers. He also ignored automated messages warning him that his “account was being setup on another phone“.

It had nothing to do with a SIM swap attack. It was an SMS-based phishing attack.

Fact #4 : SIM Swap Attack Generally Does Not Require Any Action

In most SIM swap attacks, scammers use your personal information, either purchased from other criminals or obtained through earlier phishing attacks or social engineering, to request for a SIM card replacement.

All that does not require any action on your part. In most cases, you only realise you’ve been hit when you lose access to your mobile number.

Fact #5 : SIM Swap Attack May Require Action In Some Cases

The Press 1 claim in the viral message is partially correct, but it only happens in a particular circumstance.

In India, scammers have tricked people by offering a free network upgrade, or to help improve signal quality on their phones :

  1. The scammer will call the victim, claiming to be from their mobile service provider.
  2. The scammer will try to get the victim to reveal his/her 20-digit SIM card number.
  3. The scammer will use the 20-digit SIM number to initiate a SIM swap with the mobile service provider.
  4. The mobile service provider will automatically send an SMS to confirm the swap.
  5. Once the victim confirms the swap, his/her SIM card will stop working.
  6. The scammer now has access to the victim’s mobile number.

Fact #6 : SIM Swap Attack Does Not Hack Your Phone

The SIM swap attack does not involve any hacking of your phone.

You only lose access to your mobile number. Your phone is not hacked.

Fact #7 : SIM Swap Attack Does Not Empty Bank Accounts

Once the scammers successfully gain control of your mobile number, they can use it to intercept one-time passwords (OTP) like TAC numbers.

This allows them to change passwords to your bank accounts, social media accounts, etc. which is why SIM swap attacks are so dangerous and damaging.

However, it does not mean your bank accounts are immediately emptied. For one thing – the scammers need to know your bank login.

That’s why SIM swap victims often have had their bank logins and passwords stolen earlier though phishing attacks. The scammers only need their mobile numbers to receive OTP / TAC numbers to authenticate the transfers.

Fact #8 : SIM Swap Attack Can Be Used To Cheat Friends Too!

Stealing money from your bank account requires extra work, so scammers who do not have your bank login details will resort to cheating your friends.

With access to your phone number, they can easily gain access to your social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) as well as instant messaging apps (WhatsApp, Telegram).

Once they have control, they can send messages to your friends, pretending to be you. Naturally, they will concoct some story to ask your friends for money.

The idea is to use your (now) stolen accounts to convince your friends that you genuinely need their help. The money that they transfer goes directly to the scammers, or their mules (people who rent their bank accounts to scammers).

Now that you know the facts behind the SIM swap attack or scam, please SHARE this article with your family and friends!

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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UOB Buys Citibank Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand + Vietnam!

UOB just announced that they will take over Citibank consumer business in Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam!

Here is what you need to know…

 

UOB Buys Citibank Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand + Vietnam!

On 14 January 2022, UOB announced that they won the bid to take over Citibank consumer business in Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam.

The acquisition of Citibank in Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam will cost UOB about S$5 billion (about RM15.5 billion or USD 3.72 billion).

When completed around early 2024, the acquisition of Citibank Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam will expand UOB’s retail customer base to approximately 10 billion in the region (including Singapore).

The sale comes more than 8 months after Citi announced in April 2021 that it would be exiting the consumer banking market in 13 markets. Citi, however, will continue to retain its Singapore assets.

The acquisition will affect some 5,000 Citi employees in those four countries, about 36% of whom have worked at Citi for more than a decade.

 

Official Statement By Citibank Malaysia On UOB Purchase

On 14 January 2022, Citibank Malaysia issued this advisory on the acquisition of Citi’s Consumer Banking business in Malaysia :

Dear Valued Customer,

I am writing to let you know that Citi in Malaysia has reached an agreement with UOB Group for the acquisition of Citi’s Consumer Banking business in Malaysia.

This is a positive outcome for Citi, our people, and our customers.

UOB Group will acquire Citi’s consumer business which includes credit cards, personal loans, retail banking, mortgages and wealth management solutions for high net-worth individuals.

We are delighted to find a strong partner in UOB Group, a leading Pan-Asian institution committed to providing great products, services and customer experiences. They have established a strong presence in Southeast Asia backed by a global network of 500 offices and have a reputation for building lasting relationships with customers.

Rest assured, there will be no immediate impact to your credit card accounts, loan accounts, deposits, investments, or any other product you may hold with us. This announcement is the start of a process that we expect will take time, with closing of the transaction subject to regulatory approvals.

Until such time, all our Consumer Banking business operations, Citibank service teams including our Relationship Managers, branches, call centers, Citibank Online and mobile banking services, will continue to serve you as usual.

Citi remains committed to serving you with excellence. Together with UOB Group, we will be sharing further updates with you in the future.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Will Section 106A Let LHDN Access Your Bank Accounts?

Will the Section 106A amendment let LHDN access your bank accounts, without consent or knowledge?

Let’s take a look at the controversial amendment, and find out what FACTS really are!

 

Section 106A : Does It Let LHDN Access Your Bank Accounts?

Section 106A was just added to the Income Tax Act 1967, with the passing of the Finance Bill 2021 on 15 December 2021.

This section empowers the Inland Revenue Board (LHDN or HASiL) to access bank account information for the purpose of making garnishee order applications.

The director-general may, by notice under his hand, require any financial institution to furnish, within a specified time in the notice, the bank account information of that person, if any, or the purpose of making an application to court for a garnishee order

A garnishee order is used by creditors to collect debts from debtors by “garnishing” their bank accounts, and is nothing new.

However, much was made about Subsection (2) which states that financial institutions ordered to furnish the bank account information will not be allowed to disclose to anyone that such a request has been made.

So what’s really going on?

 

Section 106A Lets LHDN Access Bank Accounts For A LIMITED Purpose…

Many people have been sharing articles on Section 106A, claiming that it will allow LHDN to collect information on how much money they really have, in order to collect additional taxes.

Some even suggested (jokingly or otherwise) that people should withdraw their cash to keep at home, to avoid LHDN “garnishing” their hard-earned money.

The truth is – Section 106A only lets LHDN access bank account information for a specific and LIMITED purpose.

Let me summarise the key points :

  • LHDN can only ask for your bank account information for the explicit purpose of making a garnishee order application.
  • Before such a garnishee proceeding can begin, you would have already undergone a civil proceeding, which ended with a judgement against yourself.
  • Hence, the requirement that the Director-General must have a “notice under his hand”, before LHDN can proceed with the garnishee order application.
  • Before LHDN can make a garnishee order application, it must know which bank accounts you have. This is where they use Section 106A to make that request to the bank.
  • Only once LHDN has obtained your bank account information, can it make an application to the court for a garnishee order, to recover the tax you owe.
  • Subsection (2) prohibits financial institutions from informing you about such potential garnishee proceedings, to prevent you from moving your money out of those bank accounts.

Section 106A does NOT allow LHDN to request for bank account information for other purposes, whether it is to determine how rich you are, or for tax audit purposes.

Section 106A is also limited to banks, including Islamic banks and development financial institutions. It does not extend to investment fund accounts, so it wouldn’t really help LHDN in looking for people evading taxes.

 

Section 106A Access To Bank Accounts : Official LHDN Statement

On 18 December 2021, LHDN issued a press statement clarifying its access to your bank account. It is in Bahasa Malaysia, so here is my English translation :

ACCESS TO TAXPAYER BANK ACCOUNT HAS LIMITS

Inland Revenue Board (HASiL) refers to several news reports about HASiL’s power to access taxpayer bank accounts without first obtaining the account holder’s consent.

HASiL would like to clarify that the new S106A amendment of the Income Tax Act (ACP) 1967 that was approved in the Finance Bill 2021 on 15 December 2021 has granted HASiL the right to obtain taxpayer bank account information only for cases that involve garnishee orders in any court that has decided to allow the garnishee proceeding.

Garnishee proceeding is a process to enforce monetary judgements by seizing or freezing debts that must be repaid to any party, in this case HASiL, if there are tax arrears that have not be paid by the taxpayer.

This new amendment will help HASiL administer the country’s direct tax system more effectiveness by minimising tax leakage by taxpayer’s failure to pay their existing tax arrears, while increasing the rate of voluntary tax compliance.

Nevertheless, the power under this new amendment does not give HASiL absolute power to access taxpayer bank accounts frivolously. It must undergo a specific judicial process, and is limited to accesses that have already undergone civil proceedings earlier.

Taxpayers who are willing to handle their tax obligations in an orderly manner do not need to worry about this S106A ACP 1967 amendment as it does not apply to them.

In conclusion, the new S106A ACP 1967 amendment only gives HASiL the power to obtain taxpayer bank account information after garnishee proceedings are permitted by the court. HASiL once again stress that taxpayer bank account information that do not involve garnishee action cannot be accessed by HASiL through this amendment.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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How To Pay PDRM Traffic Summons Using Maybank ATM!

You can now pay your PDRM traffic summons using any Maybank ATM!

Here is what you need to know!

 

Pay Your PDRM Fines Through Pos Malaysia / Maybank ATM!

On 12 December 2021, PDRM announced that you will be able to pay your traffic summons with the 80% discount through :

  • all Pos Malaysia branches across the country
  • all Maybank ATM machines anywhere in Malaysia

Note : We have no idea if this option will extend beyond the discount period.

Read more : 80% Traffic Offence Discount Extended For PDRM + JPJ!

 

How To Pay PDRM Traffic Summons Using Maybank ATM!

Some of you have had trouble paying your PDRM traffic summons using the Maybank ATM, so here is our (partial) guide :

Step 1 : Insert your ATM card, and key in your PIN number

Step 2 : Select the PAYBILLS option.

Step 3 : Select PDRM SUMMONS PAYMENT.

Step 4 : Tap CONTINUE in this disclaimer screen.

Step 5 : Key in your MyKad (I/C) number, and tap YES.

Step 6 : Your compoundable summons will now be displayed, with the total amount to be paid (after the 80% discount).

Step 7 : Unfortunately, I have none under my name, so I cannot proceed further. But at this point, you will be allowed to make payment through the Maybank ATM, either through a cash deposit, or your Maybank account.

 

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Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Pay Your PDRM Fines Through Pos Malaysia / Maybank ATM!

PDRM now allows you to pay your fines (with an 80% discount) through Pos Malaysia or the Maybank ATM!

Here is what you need to know…

 

80% Discount For PDRM + JPJ Traffic Fines Extended!

To alleviate the heavy traffic to their servers, both PDRM and JPJ announced that they would extend their 80% discount on traffic offences!

  • PDRM : Until 31 December 2021
  • JPJ : Until 31 December 2021

Read more : 80% Traffic Offence Discount Extended For PDRM + JPJ!

 

Pay Your PDRM Fines Through Pos Malaysia / Maybank ATM!

In addition to extending their 80% discount offer until the end of the year, PDRM also added two new payment methods across the country.

From 12 until 31 December 2021, you will be able to pay your PDRM fines with the 80% discount through

  • all Pos Malaysia branches across the country
  • all Maybank ATM machines anywhere in Malaysia

Note : We have no idea if this option will extend beyond the discount period.

 

How To Pay PDRM Fines Using Maybank ATM Machine

If you are looking to pay using a Maybank ATM machine, here are the steps :

  1. Insert your ATM card and key in your PIN number.
  2. Select the PAYBILLS option.
  3. Key in your MyKad (IC) number.
  4. The Maybank ATM machine will list your outstanding PDRM traffic fines.
  5. You can then make payment through the Maybank ATM machine.

 

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
Credit Card / Paypal : https://paypal.me/techarp

Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Papparich Group Ordered To Close By High Court!

This is the end for Papparich in Malaysia – it has been ordered by the High Court of Malaya to wind up its business!

 

Papparich Group Ordered To Close By High Court!

Last year, shareholder Chen Khairy Voon and the investment holdings company Agathisfour filed separate Winding-Up Petitions against Papparich Group Sdn Bhd on 15 May 2020 and 22 May 2020 respectively, over alleged unpaid debts of RM37.22 million

Just over a year later, the High Court of Malaya in Shah Alam ordered Papparich Group Sdn Bhd (PGSB) to wind up its business on 5 May 2021.

Chan Siew Mei of KPMG Deal Advisory Sdn Bhd was appointed as the liquidator, as per The Business Times.

According to the public notice, the Winding-Up Petition was directed to be heard before the High Court of Malaya at 9 AM on 11 August 2021.

The public notice also called for any party looking to support or oppose the Petition for the Winding-Up of Papparich Malaysia to appear for the hearing.

 

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Scam Alert : CIMB Customers Hit By Fake SMS Messages!

Scammers continue to target CIMB customers, using many different kinds of fake SMS messages.

Do NOT click or call if you receive any of these fake SMS messages!

And please warn your family and friends!

 

Scam Alert : CIMB Customers Hit By Fake SMS Messages!

Whether you are a CIMB Bank customer or not, you may receive one of these alarming SMS messages :

RM 0.00 CIMB: Confidential!

Dear CIMB users, your account will TERMINATED on 24/12/20. Verify via http://www.cimbclickikm.cc to keep on using CIMB Clicks services.

Please make verification within 24hours to avoid service interruption.

RM0 CIMB: Instant Transfer RM4998.78 to CHAY LEE FEN/HONG LEONG on 23-Dec-2020, 13:06:35. Call the no. at the back of your card for queries.

If you receive any of these SMS messages, please DO NOT click on the link, or call the number. JUST IGNORE THEM, or delete them.

RM0.00 CIMB: MYR 2968.00 was charged on your card num 4204 at Shopee.MY. If this is not your txn, call 1800-9767 now.

Cimb Your account is judged as high risk by the system, PLS re-verify your account. cimbclicksecurity.com

Note : These scams do not just affect CIMB Bank. In fact, all banks are affected :

 

Why These CIMB SMS Messages Are Fake

Let us show you how to identify these fake CIMB SMS messages.

If you spot any of these warning signs, BACK OFF and DO NOT PROCEED!

Warning Sign #1 : Grammatical Mistakes

If you carefully read the first SMS messages above, you can easily spot numerous grammatical mistakes. A bank will never send such poorly worded messages to their customers.

However, they may copy the real SMS message from CIMB to trick you into thinking that this is a real transaction. Such fake SMS messages will have proper grammar.

Warning Sign #2 : Embedded Links

Banks will NEVER embed links (URLs) into the message. If you see embedded links, always think – SCAM SMS!

Unlike the Public Bank SMS scam, they used a copy of the real SMS message to trick you into clicking the URL in the first message.

Warning Sign #3 : Wrong Links

And always check the link – www.cimbclickikm.cc and cimbclicksecurity.com are not the correct addresses for the CIMB Bank websites (www.cimbclicks.com.my or www.cimb.com.my).

The best policy is to manually key in the bank website address. NEVER click on any link in an SMS, even if it looks legit.

When you see any website with .cc links, be wary because the .CC domains are registered in the Cocos (Keeling) Islands – an Australian territory of only 14 km², with only about 600 inhabitants.

Warning Sign #4 : No Personal Login Phrase / Picture

To avoid phishing attacks, banks now give you a secret response (like a picture or a phrase) to confirm that you are visiting their legitimate website.

If the website you are visiting gives you the wrong picture or secret phrase, you have been tricked into visiting a fake website designed to mimic the real bank website.

You should also remember that the bank website must show you secret picture or phrase right after you enter your login, but BEFORE you key in your password.

If you are asked to key in your password without the website displaying the secret phrase or picture, you have been tricked into visiting a fake website designed to mimic the real bank website.

 

CIMB Advice To Protect Against Fake SMS / Email Scams

Here is a list of DOs and DON’Ts to protect yourself against fake SMS / email scams.

Please DO follow these good practices

  1. Pay attention to your transaction alerts and check your account activities regularly. In case of any unusual activity, please contact us immediately.
  2. If you wish to contact us, ONLY call the number on the back of your card or refer to CIMB website “Contact Us” page.
  3. Always check the URL of the website that you are making purchases from. Ensure  the “lock” icon or “https” appears on the website’s address bar.
  4. Always find a reputable seller on online marketplaces by searching for reviews from other customers to know their experience.
  5. To access CIMB Clicks, type the entire URL as follows: www.cimbclicks.com.my
  6. Always remember to log out once you have completed your banking transactions.

Please DO NOT follow these bad practices

  1. Don’t panic and give personal information to fraudsters impersonating representatives of government agencies etc. even if they deploy fear tactics. Immediately call the number on the back of your card to verify with CIMB.
  2. Never apply for personal financing through unverified links or individuals promising a lower rate. CIMB does not impose any application charges for personal financing applications.
  3. Never take instructions from anyone to change the mobile number in CIMB records to any number other than your own mobile number.
  4. When transacting online, never continue with a purchase if you have any doubts if the seller is not genuine.
  5. Never share details such as your card number / User ID / PIN / password / TAC  with anyone or key them in in any website other than CIMB Clicks.
    (Note: CIMB will never ask for  your ‘User ID’, ‘Password’ or ‘TAC’ under any circumstances outside of CIMB Clicks).
  6. Do not click on links or open email attachments from unknown / unreliable senders / sources.
    (Note: Emails from CIMB will always end with @cimb.com such as cimb.marketing@cimb.com

 

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Scam Warning : Public Bank Customers Hit By Fake SMS!

Scammers continue to target Public Bank customers, using many different kinds of fake SMS messages.

Do NOT click or call if you receive any of these fake SMS messages!

 

Public Bank : Fake SMS Scam Warning! Do NOT Click / Call!

Whether you are a Public Bank customer or not, you may receive one of these alarming SMS messages.

Please DO NOT click on the link, or call the number. JUST IGNORE THEM, or delete them.

The safest thing to do is NEVER CLICK ON A LINK in any SMS. If you need to log into your bank account, key in the website address manually.

RM0 PBB/PIBB: Your PBB account will TERMINATED on 02Dec20 01:30:00 AM. Please make verification via http://www.mypbebank.cc to avoid service interruption. Verify now keep on using PBB services.

RM0 Credit Cash out RM3,000 form card ending no 7102 successful on 01 DEC. Information system sending. Call PBB 1800-81-9566 for any query

Warning: Your account is marked as insecure, please click Return PAC immediately to confirm that it is safe to use. (https://pbevip.vip/)

PBe Your account is in a high-risk state PLS log in immediately and return the PAC to protect your account security https://www.pbebanks.top

PBe Warning: Phishing URLs are frequent recently, PLS log in immediately to strengthen account security. 2Mar21 13:14 https://se1.pbevip.top/

PB e Your account is in a high-risk by the system, PLS re-verify your account https://pbbanks.red/ <security reminder is normal>

RM0 PIBB: Thank you for using your card ending 1098@senQ MYR 2899, Pls call 03-56260232 now, if you didn’t use it

RM0 PBB/PIBB: Trx amt MYR2699.00  @LAZADA for card ending 5738. Call PB 1-800-81-2337 now if didn t perform.

PBB: Your account is judged as high risk by the system. PLS re-verify your account https://www.pbebanks.asia/ <security reminder is normal>

PB e Alarm Your banking Suit now is marked as insecure, PLS re-verify your account https://online-pbebank.com <security reminder is normal>

 

Public Bank Fake SMS Scam : What Happens If You Click?

Clicking on the links will often lead you to a phishing website, a fake website designed to look like a Public Bank website.

You will be asked to key in your personal information, including your Public Bank user name and password. DO NOT KEY IN YOUR INFORMATION!

But if you are free and want to help screw these scammers, key in fake information as many times as possible.

Note : These scams do not just affect Public Bank. In fact, all banks are affected :

 

Public Bank : How To Identify Fake SMS Messages

With a little help from Public Bank, let’s show you how to identify fake SMS messages.

If you spot any of these warning signs, BACK OFF and DO NOT PROCEED!

Warning Sign #1 : Grammatical Mistakes

Read the two SMS messages above, and you can easily spot numerous grammatical mistakes. A bank will never send such poorly worded messages to their customers.

Warning Sign #2 : Embedded Links

Banks will NEVER embed links (URLs) into the message. If you see embedded links, always think – SCAM SMS!

Warning Sign #3 : Wrong Links

And always check the link – www.mypbebank.cc is not the correct address for the Public Bank website (www.pbebank.com)

When you see any website with .cc links, be wary because the .CC domains are registered in the Cocos Islands – an Australian territory of only 14 km², with only about 600 inhabitants.

The same goes for generic, top level domains like .TOP, .VIP, .TOP, .RED.ASIA, etc.

Warning Sign #4 : No Personal Login Phrase / Picture

To avoid phishing attacks, banks now give you a secret response (like a picture or a phrase) to confirm that you are visiting their legitimate website.

If the website you are visiting gives you the wrong picture or secret phrase, you have been tricked into visiting a fake website designed to mimic the real bank website.

You should also remember that the bank website must show you secret picture or phrase right after you enter your login, but BEFORE you key in your password.

If you are asked to key in your password without the website displaying the secret phrase or picture, you have been tricked into visiting a fake website designed to mimic the real bank website.

 

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Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support us by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!