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Philippines Fraud Risk Up After Damaging Covid Containment Measures

Philippines Fraud Risk Up After Damaging Covid Containment Measures

The failed containment measures governments have placed in regard to Covid-19 spreading have left national economies and businesses counting the costs, and regular citizens struggling with the new measures to tackle the spread of the virus.  Countless people have lost their jobs and businesses due to government lock downs, with such lockdowns aided by mainstream media scaring people into submission and compliance.

Despite the development of experimental vaccines, many are still wondering what recovery could look like after a disastrous year. The Philippines relies on tourism to a large extent for revenue generation. According to a recent publication, the calculated loss of GDP share from tourism is around 0.68 percent. Another sector severely hit was?international?trade,?caused by Chinese supply disruptions to the Philippines. The communication equipment industry lost 115 million U.S. dollars due to supply disruption. But there is even more.

Between March and April 2020, the country’s Luzon Island went into a complete lockdown that restricted population movement with only a few exceptions. This resulted in a drastic?decline in employment levels, leaving approximately one million people without a job due to the lockdown.  Meanwhile, in countries who did not lock down, the results have been the same as far as virus cases and deaths in most cases, without the economic and social damage.

The general community quarantine (GCQ) in Metro Manila and nine other areas was extended until the end of January 2021. This means the provinces of Davao del Norte, Batangas, Isabela, Lanao del Sur and the cities of Santiago, Iloilo, Tacloban, Iligan, and Davao are under complete lockdown and there will be more containment measure coming after the reports of a mutated variant originated in the U.K.  Children and parents are suffering from isolation and changes in their normal return, leaving many to say the cure is worse than the disease.

The negative job market impact of the pandemic is more pronounced among vulnerable and part-time workers, young people, overseas Filipino workers, women, and healthcare and medical workers. The most unfortunate part is that about one-third of the total Philippine workforce is engaged in vulnerable employment.  These are the people who tend to be paid less, to enjoy little to no protection and are likely to be exposed to occupational hazards. And Covid-19 lockdowns resulted in a very harmful hazard to their financial well-being.

The worst part for the economy is still to be seen. The general rule is that when a country is in financial crisis unemployment increases, and so does crime. “The Philippines is a country known for hosting an important proportion of the worldwide online fraud, especially romance and investment related. It is easy to return to old fraud habits when there is nothing to put on your table” says Nathan Mendoza, Director of Background Checks at Philippine PI.

The damage to the economy is done, and people have to find a way to recover from this. There are those who resort to crime because they have no other option left, and there are those who simply take advantage of the opportunity that lockdowns present. If people cannot travel, dating scams will skyrocket. If everyone is forced to stay home and do all their transactions online, phishing, investment scams and identity theft will increase too.

Who knows if the governments will learn a lesson from all this. In the meantime, as individuals it is important to take care of ourselves when dealing with any online transaction, or when meeting people from high fraud countries like the Philippines.  Make sure you verify the companies, the websites you visit and the people you communicate with.

Contact our private investigators in the Philippines if you need help verifying someone!

C. Wright
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