Cops to crack down on ‘entry permit scam’, sale of vax cards

Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, ordered the Anti-Cybercrime Group (ACG) to intensify its operations against individuals or groups selling fake entry permits for foreigners and coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccination cards.

This also includes other illegal online activities that are connected to the government’s coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) response, he added.

“Titiyakin natin na mananagot ang mga taong ito dahil hindi katanggap-tanggap na nakukuha pa nilang magsamantala sa kabila ng mga pagsubok na hinaharap natin dahil sa pandemya (We will see to it that these individuals will be sanctioned as their behavior is inexcusable during the pandemic),” Eleazar said in a statement.

This came after the Bureau of Immigration (BI) has already received complaints on this illegal practice wherein victims are made to believe that they have to get in touch with an immigration officer who would facilitate the foreigner’s entry in exchange for a fee. However, the point person referred to by the online scammers does not exist.

The BI also clarified that it never offers entry permits via social media.

Aside from selling fake entry permits, the PNP is also monitoring the selling of vaccination cards and swab test results online.

A vaccination card is being eyed as an additional requirement for cross-border travel. Some business establishments are also offering discounts and freebies to those who have vaccination cards as part of the private sector’s move to encourage more people to get Covid-19 jabs.

Eleazar also urged the public to report to authorities and lodge formal complaints if they were victimized by this illegal practice. (PNA)