If somebody calls you with an offer of a free telpad—landline service with a touch-screen tablet and Internet—for being a loyal customer of the Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT) company, check carefully before rushing to claim your reward.
After getting calls from PLDT telemarketers offering different bundles that include the telpad for a fee, a man called to say that I was going to get a telpad—for free.
It seemed strange since the telpad was already part of new PLDT bundles, which I had refused. But probably thinking it would sweeten his offer and make me accept it, the caller said the telpad costs P14,000 and I would be getting it for free.
But the mention of the price only made me more suspicious. I told the man that I would call PLDT when I had the time to discuss my reward. He tried to discourage me by saying my landline number was computer-generated, so the company might not know about it. Huh?
I asked PLDT public affairs officer Sarah G. Azucena-Reodica if the reward was legitimate. She gave this response: “Ignore any calls of the same nature because when I asked our telpad team if there were any promos tagged to your number, they found none.”
If you get a similar call, check with PLDT. I am sure there were strings attached to my prize but I did not have the time to ask for details.
In response to an item that came out in this column a few weeks back, DHL sent this advisory it had issued following reports of fraudulent e-mail messages:
“DHL has been notified of a fraudulent e-mail allegedly coming from a DHL e-mail address. Our local and global security departments are handling this incident with appropriate steps of action. As always, DHL Express Philippines is committed to deliver fast and secure shipments in the Philippines and across the world in compliance with international standards.”
New scam variations
Here are recent variations on scams that try to get you to send phone loads:
“Sir/Mam nag-charge po ung line nyo kailangan nyo pong gawin ung instruction para ma-cancel ang inyong charge, text nyo 300 CANCEL send nyo sa 29753862916 at replyan ng yes ang susunod na mensahe para i-cancel ang iyong transaction.”
“Globe: Naka-deactivate ang iyong outgoing calls dahil sa hindi inaasahang charge sa iyong account. Para ikansela ang nasabing charge i-text ang code na ito: 300 CANCEL i-send sa 29758173377 at mag-reply ng YES sa susunod na mensahe upang makansela ang charge at muling ma-activate ang iyong outgoing calls.”
As I have mentioned in this column, Globe said its share-a-load system only reads numbers. The word CANCEL will not register. Even if you key it in, as instructed, you will still be sending P300 worth of phone load to the number in the message.
Globe also reiterated its warning: “Be wary of text scams! Advisories, promos and rebates coming from 11-digit numbers are fake and may ask you to send an amount via Share-a-load. Official Globe advisories come from a 4-digit or alphanumeric sender only. #StopSCAM by reporting them to @Talk2GLOBE on Twitter orvia the website http://globe.com.ph/stopspam (data charges may apply).”
I also got this message recently: “There is a matter that requires your urgent attention. I will appreciate it if you can get back to me for details of it on this e-mail address: [email protected]” Needless to say, I did not bother to find out what the “urgent matter” was.
Send letters to The Consumer, Lifestyle Section, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 1098 Chino Roces Ave. cor. Mascardo and Yague Sts., 1204 Makati City; fax 8974793/94; or e-mail [email protected]