Man arrested in online payment scam

A man has been detained for allegedly taking advantage of the popular online payment service Alipay’s “Express Payment” tool to scam people, police said on Friday.

A man has been detained for allegedly taking advantage of the popular online payment service Alipay’s “Express Payment” tool to scam people, police said on Friday.

The suspect, surnamed Wu, was caught on Thursday afternoon and allegedly owned up that he had defrauded over 100 people of about 300,000 yuan (US$46,000), police said.

Wu, who was working as customer service for a trade company based in Yangpu District which sells laptops on jd.com and taobao.com, said he hooked up victims on the internet, claiming to be offering loan service.

From those who contacted him and asked about the loan service, Wu asked for their name, identity card number, bank account and mobile phone number – necessary data for activating the “Express Payment” which correlates a bank card to a person’s Alipay account and enables money transfer without notices from the bank.

Before the payment method is activated, an SMS message with a verification code would be sent to the mobile phone number used to register with the service. Wu then asked the victim who received such a message to tell him the code and thus completed the registration process, police claimed.

Investigation started in August when a man surnamed Jin reported to police in Jinshan District that he lost 5,300 yuan to the scammer this way.

Jin told the police that he lost the money in his bank card just minutes after he told the scammer the verification code in the SMS message.

Jinshan police said they have so far identified four similar cases which were probably committed by the same suspect. Victims lost about 50,000 yuan in those cases, police said.


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