Man loses 1 million baht in online purchase fraud

Man loses 1 million baht in online purchase fraud

The owner of an online car accessories shop says he has been conned out of nearly one million baht by a fraudster who posed as a buyer and stole his identity to access his online bank account.

The 28-year-old victim, Pansuthee Meeluakij, who uses Facebook to sell automotive parts and accessories, filed a petition with the Technology Crime Suppression Division (TCSD) on Tuesday. 

In his complaint, the Ayutthaya native said a Facebook user contacted him on July 28 to buy an automotive part worth 48,000 baht. Mr Pansuthee usually gives his Kasikorn bank account details to customers for money transfers before he sends the products to them.  

But this buyer asked Mr Pansuthee to send a copy of his ID card to him in case he did not receive the product after making the payment. Mr Pansuthee covered the 13 digits representing his ID before sending it. 

A day later, the conman claimed he could not transfer the money unless Mr Pansuthee applied for K-Cyber Banking, a Kasikorn Bank online service. He complied with the request, but then the buyer disappeared.

On July 31, his mobile phone was cut off and he then discovered the suspect used the copy of his ID card to ask for a new SIM card of the same phone number at a True Move outlet at Mega Bangna shopping mall.  

Mr Pansuthee later checked his bank account and found 986,700 baht had gone missing from 20 withdrawals, each time between 50,000 and 60,000 baht. The first withdrawal was made at Tesco Lotus hypermarkets in Bangkok’s Bang Na district and the last was recorded in Phetchaburi province. 

Mr Pansuthee was told by Kasikorn Bank staff that an individual had made a request over the phone to change the password of his K-Cyber Banking account and provided his personal details to the bank correctly. 

Mr Pansuthee earlier lodged a complaint with Muang Ayutthaya police station but sought help from the TCSD on Tuesday to help speed up the investigation.  

He warned other online vendors to be more vigilant when displaying copies of their ID cards to fraudsters who may be posing as buyers.

A preliminary police investigation has identified the man who turned up at the True Move outlet and the owner of a bank account the stolen money was transferred to.       

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