THE National Privacy Commission (NPC) said it is currently conducting an investigation on the incidents of spam/scam text messages that now include the name of subscribers or recipients.
According to a statement from Privacy Commissioner John Henry Naga, issued on Thursday, they are now "monitoring and investigating the proliferation of unsolicited text messages from anonymous numbers, with some containing the receiver's names."
Earlier, the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) tasked telecommunication companies to again send out warnings to their subscribers with regards to the new type of spam text messages.
According to the NTC memorandum issued last August 26, it tasked the network service providers — Globe Telecom, Smart Communications and DITO Telecommunity — to send out messages warning their subscribers.
The messages will run from August 31 to Sept. 6, 2022.
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For its part, the Philippine National Police (PNP)-Anti Cybercrime Group appealed to the public to disregard the spam messages that they continuously receive.
PNP-ACG spokesman Police Lt. Michelle Sabino said the scammers continue with their activities because there are some people who still patronize them.
Naga said the NPC held a meeting with telecommunications providers, where the companies committed to intensify their technological and security safeguards, including the blocking of numbers to curb the surge immediately, among others.
"We are also in coordination with the National Telecommunications Commission to share information and conduct concerted actions to the full extent of our respective mandates," he said.
He also said that the privacy body will conduct an open public webinar next week.
"[W]e shall discuss the risks and harms of receiving these text messages, the best practices to protect ourselves from being scammed, and other useful information that we can apply to our daily lives. We invite everyone to join this event, and we hope for your active participation in this initiative," Naga said.
"Consistent with our thrust to empower our citizens, we urge vigilance in protecting personal data, whether online or offline, especially in activities that require the disclosure of names, numbers and other information that could divulge our identities," he added.