Facebook shuts 3 ‘poser’ accounts using Cascolan’s name to swindle money — PNP
MANILA, Philippines — Facebook has disabled three accounts that “illegally assumed” the identity of the country’s top cop to swindle money from victims purportedly for social welfare and humanitarian projects, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said.
In a statement Sunday, the PNP said police cybercrime investigators have traced these “poser accounts,” which used the name of PNP chief Gen. Camilo Cascolan, to several cases of online swindling and estafa.
PNP Anti-Cybercrime Group (ACG) director Brig. Gen. Marvin Manuel Pepino said these fake accounts “have been active in social networks enticing Facebook users to donate funds purportedly to purchase computer tablets for students in urban poor communities for online classes.”
The PNP said the ACG initiated an investigation and a case build-up on the activities of persons behind the identified bogus Facebook accounts and had requested social media giant to takedown these pages to prevent possible further illegal activities.
The PNP-ACG “promptly received a communication from Facebook’s Law Enforcement Outreach Manager, Rob Abrams, confirming that Facebook has disabled all three accounts.”
Further, Pepino said authorities have sent subpoenas to four persons of interest to compel them to appear before the Regional Field Units of Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) for ongoing investigations into fake Facebook accounts using the PNP chief’s identity in online scam activities.
“This joint ACG-CIDG investigation seeks to further develop facts and new inputs to identify the personalities behind online scam operations using these bogus Facebook accounts” Pepino said.
He added that those behind these fake Facebook accounts may face criminal charges for violation of Sec. 4 (b) 3 of Republic Act No. 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012, for identity theft; and Article 315 of the Revised Penal Code for Swindling or Estafa (Online Scam).
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