Credit card issuers urge Filipinos to fight ‘budol’ scams

June 18, 2024

CCAP reminds Filipinos to observe vigilance against fraud.

The Credit Card Association of the Philippines (CCAP) urges credit cardholders to stay vigilant against scams in its #FightBudol campaign as it raises credit awareness during the Pilipinas Fraud Awareness Week on July 1 to 5, 2024.

Credit card issuers urge Filipinos to fight ‘budol’ scams

Credit card issuers urge Filipinos to fight ‘budol’ scams


The event aims to educate and raise awareness among Filipino consumers on fighting credit card fraud, especially as scammers become more cunning and innovative with their tactics.

According to CCAP, fraudulent credit card activities via remote and other digital payment channels have significantly increased in the country since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.

“Fraud cases have been on the rise due to the growing acceptance of various digital payment platforms. And with the increasing popularity of artificial intelligence (AI) tools and platforms, scammers are finding ways to create smarter, more genuine-looking spam emails, SMS, and other means to deceive credit cardholders,” said CCAP executive director Alex Ilagan.

CCAP rallies its 16 member-issuers behind its ongoing #FightBudol campaign for Pilipinas Fraud Awareness Week. The event will feature a lineup of activities focused on consumer protections and regulations, tips and reminders to avoid credit card fraud, and consumer rights and mechanisms for reporting fraud.

The activities will include a series of educational videos from industry stakeholders like Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, Department of Trade and Industry, and National Bureau of Investigation, and telco giants such as Globe Telecom and Smart Communications. Mastercard and Visa will also sponsor webinars focusing on credit card fraud awareness and prevention.

CCAP advises credit cardholders to watch out for the new ways scammers or fraudsters exploit to lure their victims:

Phishing, smishing, and vishing: These are some of the most commonly used tactics by credit card fraudsters. Perpetrators will send legitimate-looking emails (phishing) or text messages (smishing), as well as make a call (voice phishing or vishing for short) to defraud people and entice them to divulge sensitive personal information and credit card details. The messages are often worded strongly and with urgency to make the recipient panic and act immediately.

How to avoid: Watch out for an SMS, email, or voice call from a prepaid/unknown mobile number. A more important safety tip is to never reveal credit card information—especially card verification value (CVV) and one-time password (OTP)—over email, SMS, and even calls. If one is unsure of the legitimacy of an email or text message they received, they may call their card issuer for confirmation.

SMS Spoofing: Scammers can lure you into believing that the text message actually came from a legitimate company. Similar to smishing, SMS spoofing sends you a link that leads to a fake website to collect your credit card details and OTP.

How to avoid: Do not click on unfamiliar links sent via SMS, even if the sender ID looks legitimate. Card issuers will never ask for your card details and OTPs through SMS text links. Ignore these text messages. Replying to these, even as a jest, lets the scammer know that the mobile number is active, which can make the recipient a bigger target. If you are unsure, call the official hotline of your card issuer or the company indicated in the sender ID to verify.

Account takeover: Once the scammer gets hold of a cardholder’s card details, they will perform an account takeover. They will contact the issuing bank and use the cardholder’s personal information to access and change the PIN, mailing address, password, mobile number, and other crucial details. These changes are meant to intercept OTPs sent by banks so they can use the credit card for transactions.

How to avoid: Don’t post your personal information on social media because fraudsters can get your details online. Apart from making your passwords hard to guess, change it regularly and do not use the same password across platforms. Credit cardholders must keep an eye on their transactions and track notifications about any changes made to their account. If one receives notifications or OTPs for transactions they did not perform, the best course of action is to call the bank immediately.

“As scammers come up with new, smarter methods of tricking people, credit cardholders must become even more vigilant and proactive in protecting their credit card information. Combating financial crime is a shared responsibility so we need everyone’s cooperation in our continuous fight against these progressive fraudsters,” said Mr. Ilagan.


For more information about CCAP’s credit awareness programs, visit CCAP’s website: ccap.net.ph or follow the CCAP Facebook page, fb.com/CreditCardAssocPH.
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