Most Saudi cities report single digit virus cases

A security worker checked worshippers before Friday prayers in Riyadh.  (File: Reuters)
A security worker checked worshippers before Friday prayers in Riyadh. (File: Reuters)
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Updated 02 December 2020

Most Saudi cities report single digit virus cases

Most Saudi cities report single digit virus cases
  • The new deaths put the tally of fatalities in Saudi Arabia from the virus at 5,907

RIYADH: With the exception of six, most Saudi cities reported coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in single digit on Tuesday.
The Kingdom recorded 263 new cases raising the total number of cases since the beginning of the pandemic to 357,623. There are currently 4,540 cases, 649 of which are in critical care.
Of the Kingdom’s 13 regions, Riyadh had the highest number of cases with 62, Makkah second with 52, followed by Madinah region with 41 cases.
The 374 recoveries announced yesterday brought the total number to 347,176. The Kingdom’s current recovery rate is holding steady at 97 percent.
The city of Riyadh recorded the highest number of recoveries with 49, followed by Madinah with 31 and Hofuf with 27 recoveries.
Riyadh has also seen the highest number of recoveries since the beginning of the pandemic with more than 57,000, followed by Makkah with 33,558 and Jeddah with 33,059. For more than six weeks, daily death counts have been coming in below the 20-case mark and falling. Eleven new deaths were recorded on Tuesday, raising the total to 5,907 deaths.
To curb the spread of COVID-19, the MOH conducted 46,372 new polymerase chain reaction tests in the past 24-hours, bringing the total number of tests conducted to 9.66 million.


Fraudsters up their game, posing as bank officials on the phone in Saudi Arabia

Fraudsters up their game, posing as bank officials on the phone in Saudi Arabia
Vishing that occurs during a telephone call aims to provoke fear in the victim so that customers will be more susceptible to giving out personal, financial, or security details. (shutterstock)
Updated 18 January 2021

Fraudsters up their game, posing as bank officials on the phone in Saudi Arabia

Fraudsters up their game, posing as bank officials on the phone in Saudi Arabia
  • The Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) has warned bank customers, both citizens and expatriates, not to fall victim to financial frauds being perpetrated by scammers

JEDDAH: Fraudsters have developed a new scam, contacting residents in Saudi Arabia and pretending to be bank staffers requesting customer details.
A number of Arab News staff have received such calls in recent weeks. One caller spoke Urdu while two other callers posing as senior officials from the headquarters of the bank spoke in English and Arabic with a local accent.
They used phone numbers that appeared to be local numbers but upon calling back, the lines failed to connect.
The racketeers collect phone numbers of customers and ring them up, saying that their bank account or ATM card requires immediate updating. The scammers use the information provided to gain access to their bank accounts.
Speaking to Arab News, Talat Zaki Hafiz, secretary-general of the Media and Banking Awareness Committee of Saudi banks, said: “Saudi banks represented by the Media and Banking Awareness Committee have repeatedly warned bank customers not to react to stray phone calls of any kind coming from unknown sources that ask to update their banking record or personal information.” He further confirmed that banks do not request such information through phone calls or SMS messages.
Mohammed Khurram Khan, a professor of cybersecurity at the King Saud University in Riyadh, told Arab News: “Phishing, an online scam which targets users through emails where individuals are encouraged to click on a link that takes them to fraudulent sites, was troubling people. Now it’s a different kind of scam known as ‘vishing,’ over-the-phone phishing, where scammers persuade users to share their banking information by impersonating a bank official.”

HIGHLIGHT

The racketeers collect phone numbers of customers and ring them up, saying that their bank account or ATM card requires immediate updating. The scammers use the information provided to gain access to their bank accounts.

Vishing that occurs during a telephone call aims to provoke fear in the victim so that customers will be more susceptible to giving out personal, financial, or security details.
Sharing his experience Zafar Hasan, an e-learning consultant in Riyadh, said: “I received a call from someone on an unknown mobile number who introduced himself as a bank employee and told me that my ATM card was going to be blocked. It required an immediate update so I should give my Iqama number (residence permit number) and sixteen-digit ATM card number. I felt something was fishy, so I told him that I would go personally to the bank to update the card.”
The Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) has warned bank customers, both citizens and expatriates, not to fall victim to financial frauds being perpetrated by scammers.
SAMA called on bank customers to take information only from the official channels of the bodies regulating the Kingdom’s financial and investment sectors and inform the competent security authorities about such fraudulent attempts.