Given how much time we tend to spend browsing social media (although this varies from person to person), we have been exposed to many of advertisements.

Heck, we could be so numb to pop-up ads that our fingers move faster than the speed of light to get away from the ad before our brains can fully process the action, because we did so many times.

But there are advertisements like “This Singaporean made $1 million in a day!” or part-time remote jobs that offer a ridiculous amount of money for work that requires minimal effort like these:

Image: (Janice Sia)

It’s almost like money starts growing from virtual trees….

Anyway, a Singaporean lady by the name of Janice Sia was intrigued by the advertisement served to her on Tiktok

No, not because she fell for the scam and was lured by the monetary incentive…

But just out of curiosity: How these e-commerce scams work?

Well, thanks to a secret infiltration, Janice found the answer to that question.

Step 1: Recruitment via social networks

Compared to older scams where scammers tend to call every possible number combination or send mass emails, this e-commerce scam starts with a simple social media post.

He specifies that it is a easy part-time workwith the large sum of daily payment of “SGD 50~SG 350+deliberately bolded to get your attention.

Sounds almost too good to be true, right?

Image: (Janice Sia)

However, for the scammers, it’s still a game of big exposure and numbers, and waiting for their potential victims to bite the hook.

So how do they manage to be convincing?

Step 2: Impersonate a legitimate organization

After Janice contacted the number given to her, the person introduced herself as a representative of “blah-blah CORP LTD/PTE LTD”, and that she is sponsored by reputable companies like Amazon, YouTube and Instagram.

Hey, why don’t you add Google, Baidu, QQ, WeChat and SnapChat while you’re at it? You should cover all the bases while you’re at it.


Image: (Janice Sia)

This is only a first step towards establishing their “legitimacy”.

The victim will then be asked to fill in some basic personal information, such as your contact number, age, and work experience.

It looks like a real course question, as if it were a simple job interview to at least know your background.

But it’s also an important step for scammers to see if you’re a potential target.

If you’re under 16, chances are you don’t even have your own debit card and the scam can’t even begin, so expect you to be ignored afterwards .

If you’re over 16 and have little to no work experience, well, that makes you a prime target because it’s always good to take advantage of your innocence.


Step 3: Get the victim to join the “legitimate” group

Then the victim will be dragged into a new group that has many other numbers to make it look like it is a legitimate business and there are many people involved.

The newest member will receive a set of instructions on how the job works and will be actively encouraged to participate in all opportunities to grab money or get scammed.

Image: Facebook (Janice Sia)

Step 4: Hanging the first small bait

In order to hook the victim and show them “how fast” they can make money, the first task given is ridiculously easy.

The victim will be asked to like a number of posts on an Instagram account and then send it to “Ms. Jenny” for PayNow salary payment.

It’s simple and yet you win $2.


Scammers will continue to link you to various staff members to give the impression that there is a chain of command and that the company is the real deal.

Image: (Janice Sia)

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Step 5: Promise more commissions

I hope the readers matter because at this point the scammers are making a small loss of $2.

But the stakes are still minimal and the victim is not yet completely addicted.

The e-commerce scam moves to its next stage where the victim will be forced to part with a small amount of their money, with the promise that they will receive more money in return later on.

The second task will require the victim to “purchase” an item.


In this case, Janice is forced to buy a fake cosmetic product that costs $120 from “Amazon”, but with the refund policy and the 30% commission, it makes it look like the victim will only earn more money. money instead of losing.

Image: (Janice Sia)

Janice decided to go ahead with the purchase to see where the scam was going.

Step 5: Honor monetary compensation (at the beginning)

To his surprise, the payment arrives as promised.

Once the money is transferred to the victim, they get a taste of what it’s like to earn easy money.

Right now, the victim would surely think “this is real” because the quick money deposit is right in front of their eyes.


Image: (Janice Sia)

At this point, that means the victim has earned $158 from the scammers, while the scammer is completely lost.

So how do scammers recoup their losses?

Step 6: Offer bigger cash prizes

The fraud is reaching its crucial stage.

Scammers will ask victims to complete more redemption tasks – thus parting with more of their money – but with the assurance that they will be refunded the full price, with the main 30% commission still being valid.

But the “products” that the victims will have to buy will become more and more expensive.


These shoes cost 520 Singapore dollars, which means the scammers will be back three times the amount they gave you before. It is also the amount of money that you are very likely to lose.

Because remember, you’re relatively young and you don’t have a lot of money in your bank accounts in the first place. Additionally, you may be close to reaching the limit of what your debit/credit card allows you to charge in a given transaction.

Please also note that the website link “” is very wrong.

And if the “site” requires your debit/credit card information, the scammers would have completely won because the site belongs to them and they now have access to your bank account information.


Step 7: No retreat

As Janice is well aware that this is a scam, she refuses to do the larger redemptions and asks if she can go back to the “Like” task.

Image: (Janice Sia)

Of course, there is no chance of this happening, because scammers want to the victims to do the task of redemption. They want to the victim continually falls into this trap where victims are constantly making transactions with them.

The reasons are as follows:

  1. The scammers are now operating with a loss of $158; if the victim does not take the next step, it will be quite difficult for him to recover the money
  2. To see if victims have other bank accounts they can tap into
  3. This gives scammers insight into the financial capacity of their victims
  4. Together with the approximate information collected, it gives the scammers an idea of ​​the maximum amount of money they can extort from their victims.

Because remember, the scam will end once the scammers refuse to refund the money.

Therefore, the scammer pressure the victim to do the task of redemption.


In this case, the scammer will try to be nice and use words like “please” and “dear” to try to trick the victim into doing what they want.

At one point, the scammer even accuses Janice with the line, “Are you bullying me dear?”

Janice rightly responds with a “WTF” in her mind and probably ignores the scammer afterwards.

Step 8: Continuous Bombardment

The main problem with all sorts of scams is that the scammer can never coerce the victims into doing their bidding.

It also has to do with the built-in security that banks have in place, such as one-time passwords (OTPs) for online purchases or the need for constant agreements on online banking apps so that the transaction works.


Therefore, if the potential victim decides to quit at some point (while they still have their money), there’s really nothing the scammers can do about it.

The only tactic they can employ is to irritate the victims by constantly sending messages and reminding them that they are a legitimate organization, and that they could do so much more money if they just followed the instructions.

Image: (Janice Sia)

Of course, being the smart woman that Janice is, she ignores all of that and the ghosts, while keeping her ill-begotten earnings of $38 without a single ounce of guilt.

Kudos to Janice.

Singapore police are on the case

On March 20, Singapore police declared that they arrested 8 men suspected of being involved in such online e-commerce scams.


They were all between 18 and 30 years old.

Investigations began after police received reports between December 2021 and March 2022 of victims receiving unsolicited WhatsApp/Facebook/Telegram messages with advertisements advertising high-paying part-time jobs related to the marketing of products.

The general scheme of the scam remains the same, where victims will first be eased into “work” with simple tasks before being forced to do “online shopping”, when they were only transferring money to scammers.

The most insidious part of these scams is that the victims would even be asked to recruit more members into the “organization” to improve their own membership status.

… This is worse than the multi-level pyramid scheme, wow.


When there are no more tasks issued, or when victims are no longer able to make withdrawals from their member accounts, they only then realize that they have been scammed.


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