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Singapore: Apple investigates iTunes fraud

 |  July 23, 2018

Apple is currently investigating reports of fraudulent credit card charges being made through iTunes. According to Channel NewsAsia, dozens of Apple customers in Singapore have noticed a high number of fraudulent charges made via iTunes, with two people saying that they had at least US$5,000 taken from their bank accounts through iTunes purchases.

One customer said she only realized something was wrong when she received a text message from HSBC that she had less than 30% of her credit limit left.

The affected customers are from some of the most popular banks in Singapore, including UOB, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC) or DBS.

OCBC has noticed unusual transactions on 58 cards so far in July, all fraudulent transactions through iTunes.

“In early July, we detected and investigated unusual transactions on 58 cardholders’ accounts. Upon confirmation that these were fraudulent transactions, we deployed the necessary counter-measures and are currently assisting the affected cardholders via the chargeback process,” said Vincent Tan, head of credit cards at OCBC Bank.

In addition, UOB has increased monitoring all iTunes spending over recent weeks due to the increase in fraudulent activity.

“Where our system detected a potentially fraudulent transaction, we immediately called our customer to check with them on the transaction,” said UOB, adding that it would help a customer claim a refund once the fraudulent transaction is confirmed.

A new card would also be issued as an additional security measure, and if UOB is unable to reach certain customers, an SMS notification would be sent. The financial institution will also block those bank accounts temporarily to prevent further fraudulent activity.

Apple Singapore said that it is “looking into the matter,” while also directing users to a support page to find out how to report problematic iTunes purchases: “They will need to sign in using their Apple ID, and will then be able to view purchases and assess veracity before reporting the issue.”

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