Avoid becoming victims of ‘Telegram Takeover’

Avoid becoming victims of ‘Telegram Takeover’

IPOH: Beware if you receive suspicious Telegram messages from acquaintances, family or relatives, as the application can be hijacked by scammers through, ‘Telegram Takeover’.
Perak Commercial Crime Investigation Department head Supt Hasbullah Abd Rahman said the hackers of the Telegram application use various modus operandi (MO) to deceive their victims.

“Before, the MO was to pretend to be a friend or relative asking to borrow money, but now, their MO is to enter the user’s line into a non-existent investment group or share a link that leads to the theft of money in the account bank,” he said when met by Bernama at his office here.

He said that based on police reports, the complainants claimed they received a message from a friend or relative asking to borrow money and requested the money to be transferred online.
“However, when the complainant met the friend or relative, the latter denied having sent the Telegram to borrow money,” he said, adding that the Perak police recorded 54 such cases between 2023 and 2023 involving losses of RM 134,959.01.

Hasbullah said there are several signs to indicate a user’s Telegram is being hacked, which include not being able to access their accounts; videos, messages and photos sent from their accounts to other contacts without their knowledge, requiring to fill in ‘details’ whenever logging into their accounts and receiving an SMS or ‘notification’ that their accounts are accessed from other gadgets.

“If this happens, users need to reset by setting security measures such as the two-step verification, using a PIN code or fingerprint.
“This is because if we continue to ‘uninstall’ Telegram from the smartphone and let scammers continue to use our account arbitrarily, it may cause problems or more people will be deceived, the step is to continue using it but take stricter security measures as provided by the application,” he said.

He said users should also log out if they open it with a public gadget, not reveal their Telegram OTP code and reset or deactivate the account if it is found to have engaged in suspicious activity.

They also need to report to the police if the Telegram hacking involves money and lives, he added.
Hasbullah said the hackers would also add the victim’s Telegram account or number to the ‘investment’ group for fraudulent purposes or share fake links, such as to get government assistance.
“Don’t ever click on the link because the link is of an invalid APK (android package kit) for ‘stealing’ money in an account.

“Victims will be asked to update their personal information on the downloaded link, then an error page will be displayed and the money in the bank account will be lost,” he said.
He said consumers also need to be careful with advertisements on online gold purchases on Facebook, Instagram and Telegram.

“First, the buyer will be asked to deposit some money into an account, supposedly for the processing fee, and this ended with the victim not receiving the gold and attempts to contact the seller went futile,” he added.


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