NAT AD SCAM 1-1649163833470
Her story was shared in a video clip on Abu Dhabi Police’s social media platforms to raise awareness Image Credit: Screengrab

Abu Dhabi: An Abu Dhabi resident has shared how her prompt reporting of online fraud helped her recover funds stolen from her bank account.

Her story was narrated in a video clip on Abu Dhabi Police’s social media platforms as part of its campaign to create better awareness of cybercrime, scams and online fraud.

In the clip, the Arab resident detailed how she had noticed gradual withdrawals from her account after she had shopped online. “A while back, I [did some] online shopping. Then, 12 hours later, I realised the bank was gradually debiting from my account every [minute or so],” the resident said in Arabic.

Contacting the bank

She immediately contacted her bank to trace the source of the debit.

“I talked to my bankers and found that it wasn’t my bank that took these sums. [So] I blocked the card and then contacted Abu Dhabi Police,” the resident said. The police took down the details and assured her that her funds could be retrieved.

“After some time, I got the money back in small amounts,” the resident said gratefully.

Awareness campaign

The Abu Dhabi Police’s online crime awareness campaign, launched last month, has been working to increase residents’ vigilance against scams and fraud attempts. The police has urged residents to report any incidents promptly, which can help authorities to trace stolen funds as well as track down scammers.

Another Abu Dhabi resident shared his brush with online fraud last month, detailing how the Abu Dhabi Police helped him retrieve the Dh140,000 that was stolen from his bank account after he responded to an email scam.

In fact, Abu Dhabi Police already has returned Dh21 million worth of funds over the last seven months to victims of phone scams and online fraud. A total of 1,740 cases were reported during the period, and police were able to return funds to the rightful owners in up to 90 per cent of reported cases.

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Report fraud, scams

Authorities also added that the majority of cases in which funds could not be retrieved were a result of delayed reporting by victims.

In order to report a scam or fraud attempt, call the Abu Dhabi Police Aman service on 8002626, or text Aman on 2828.