Be wary of cognitive hacking, rationalise to avoid falling prey to scammers

Be wary of cognitive hacking, rationalise to avoid falling prey to scammers

KUALA LUMPUR: The society not only needs to be alert to suspicious calls to deal with scams but also needs to overcome the issue of cognitive hacking to ensure that they do not become a victim of the crime.

Chief Regulatory Officer of the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC), Datuk Zulkarnain Mohd Yasin, said cognitive hacking occurs when victims are unable to rationalise and act according to their emotions, thus opening up opportunities for scammers to carry out their activities.

He said the matter may happened as a result of data mining by fraudulent criminals which gives them an advantage to analyse through digital traces to manipulate the thoughts and attitudes of victims.

“Scammers now don’t hack the device but they hack our mind so that our rational mind will be silenced or stuck until the emotions that affect us feel doubtful because our mind has been hacked.
“What is important when we receive a suspicious call is to pause. This is because their tactics are intimidating and ask us to take immediate action in a state of fear and in a state of silence, rational thought does not occur,” he said in the Ruang Bicara programme produced by Bernama TV last night ( Oct 3).

Zulkarnain said when faced with such a situation, individuals need to stop for a moment to think, turn off the call and ask for a third party’s opinion or do a self-check to verify any calls that are found to be suspicious.

“Humans are made to be in a hurry, so in matters involving something that is uncertain or even doubtful, we should stop and check. Those are the two things we have to train ourselves,” he said.

Commenting on fake news, he said every media agency has a big role and responsibility in controlling the content provided to overcome the spread of inaccurate information by irresponsible parties.

Referring to the times during the COVID-19 pandemic, which witnessed the spread of unauthentic information that had an impact on public health, he said the matter should not be taken lightly because it could threaten national security.

“We have to educate the public, we have to talk about the need to deal with this fake news because there are some who see this as a joke…maybe from the point of view of ordinary people this is something funny.

“We shouldn’t look at this for ourselves and we have to remember that children as young as nine or even six years old have been exposed to social media, so their minds can also be influenced, that’s what we’re worried about,” he said


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