DOHA: Many Qataris and expatriates, who have fallen victims to a recent phone scam, have taken to social media to alert friends about the ‘one ring’ fraud which results in unauthorised charges on the mobile phone user.
Scammers randomly call phone numbers in Qatar and after the first ring, they disconnect.
When the victim calls back, a certain amount is deducted from his credit, normally from $10 to $30, the Arabic daily Al Raya has reported.
The scam has caused alarm to victims as they fear scammers might have gotten access to their bank accounts and other important data saved in their mobiles.
Qataris and expats who have encountered the problem have started sending messages to friends and loved ones via social media to warn them of the scam which aims to steal money and information.
Some of the numbers they said were connected to the scam included +371127913091, +375602605281, +221708818781 and other starting with +375, +371 and +221 which are the country codes of Belarus, Latvia and Senegal.
People on social media have urged the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology to take the responsibility of protecting mobile users by asking telecom companies to block such numbers and monitor the source of the calls to fight such scams and other cyber crimes more effectively.
They have also advised mobile users not to answer calls or call back to avoid charges. If they want to call back, they should first check the number on online directories and know whether there has been reports of any scam involving the number, they added.