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Philippines Fraud Risk Up After Damaging, Ineffective Covid Lockdown

Philippines Fraud Risk Up After Damaging, Ineffective Covid Lockdown

Our private investigation team in the Philippines has used this space many times to warn people about rising fraud risk, especially in times when a natural disaster has struck the country. As expected in those cases, the crime rates have increased exponentially since the Covid-19 pandemic started, and the lockdown measures have only worsened the situation.

The lockdown in the Philippines and other countries has proven to be ineffective in regard to holding the virus from spreading. The mitigation strategies initially implemented may well have gone some way to reducing the rate at which the virus spreads through the population. But the truth is strict lockdowns have not proven to decline the daily new cases or deaths. When citizens are not allowed to leave their residence except for essential purposes such as grocery shopping and medical care, the result is that many businesses are being forced to shut down.  Countless others are impacted by depression, drug abuse, mental and physical issues and other complications from not being able to get out and go about their normal lives.   The most immediate result is an economic crisis. Travel bans have also been extremely damaging to an economy that relies so much on tourism.

If the hard lockdowns had been effective, the rate of infection would have dropped significantly. But this simply did not happen. In the meanwhile, there is no way to hold an economy when people cannot produce, which leads to broken businesses, which leads to unemployment, poverty and increased fraud risk and crime rates. It is important to bear in mind that the correct way to assess lockdown measures is not against total inaction, but against a baseline of mitigation strategies that do not have such harsh consequences in the economy.  With nowhere to go but to stay inside, and no way to make money, many unethical people have resorted to online scams, romance schemes and fraud.

How fraudsters are taking advantage

These days it is not uncommon to stumble with someone in the Philippines who cannot afford their bills, food or medical treatment. So, fraudsters take advantage of the situation and use it to lure foreign victims into sending funds to help them out. The sad part is that the money was never intended to help a person in need, but just a lie to fill criminals’ pockets.

Investigators advise hiring a background check in Manila or Cebu to all of those foreigners who are currently in an online relationship with someone from the Philippines.  Although the Covid virus has a small mortality rate, the media continues to scare the public into submission, and many people are stressed.  With this situation, some people try to meet people online to find comfort during these unprecedented times.  If you meet someone, the first step is to verify they are who they claim to be, and to check they are being crystal clear about their past and their current situation.

For those who have been unable to travel due to the restrictions, surveillance and local investigation can be of great assistance. Cheaters and scammers are feeling safe during the pandemic because they feel the chances of being caught in their lies are low. However, even if you are thousands of miles away you can still have professional eyes and ears on the ground in the Philippines.

Confinement has caused a lot of damage in the Philippines, an already high-risk country for fraud and scams. It has served as an excuse and an argument for criminals to prey on their victims, it has left more people unemployed and desperate for a new way of earning a living. Without legitimate work sources, there are not many options but to turn to the wrong side.

Even if you feel like you are able to help someone out, be sure to verify first if they really need your help or if they are just trying to scam you.  If you’ve met someone online or in person who is located in the Philippines, contact us to stay safe.  Let us uncover clear evidence for you.

C. Wright
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