Senator Win Gatchalian is taking a stand against cybercrime by filing Senate Bill 2407, the Anti-Financial Account Scamming Act.
Gatchalian emphasized the importance of protecting “the integrity of the country’s financial system” and that financial account owners don’t fall victim to criminal syndicates.
Senate Bill 2407 aims to establish clear legal repercussions for individuals involved in various forms of financial-related fraud and illicit activities. This bill addresses a range of actions, including willingly assisting in illicit transactions, employing social engineering tactics to manipulate others, and engaging in other fraudulent financial-related schemes.
The scope of these actions includes hacking into accounts, enlisting others to participate in cybercrime, and orchestrating acts that lead to significant economic disruption. Under the provisions of this bill, those found guilty of such actions will face appropriate penalties.
Gatchalian noted the increased adoption of digital transactions, especially during the pandemic, but this also paralleled with the rapid rise of cybercrime incidents. Illustrating this point, he cited the “Mark Nagoyo” scam—a hacking incident that occurred in late 2021. In this case, compromised accounts of over 700 BDO Unibank customers were exploited for the unauthorized purchase of cryptocurrencies.
Gatchalian also mentioned other notable incidents from the past three years, such as the unauthorized transfer from Landbank payroll accounts that resulted in victimized teachers losing amounts ranging from Php26,000 to Php121,000. Phishing scams that targeted GCash users were also highlighted.
Recent data from Kaspersky shows that the Philippines is the fifth-most targeted country in Southeast Asia when it comes to phishing attacks.
Source: Senate of the Philippines