Scammer mimics party chairman on telephone

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Scammer mimics party chairman on telephone

Saenuri Party Chairman Kim Moo-sung warned people close to him of a voice phishing scammer who was calling people and saying he was Kim and then asking for money.

One friend of Kim apparently gave 10 million won ($9,070) to the scammer.

“A person impersonating me on the phone has pocketed money from some of my female acquaintances in a voice phishing scam,” said Kim during the Saenuri’s leadership meeting Wednesday at the National Assembly.

A number of Kim’s acquaintances fell victim to the fraud.

“I have contemplated whether I should address this issue in public. An increasing number of people that I know have been tricked by this man who imitates my voice.”

The ruling party leader said the scammer only targeted females.

“A number of people told me they received a phone call from me asking for money. Fortunately many did not wire the money as demanded to a bank account.”

Kim said he confirmed several cases during a visit to Busan, which he represents as a lawmaker.

“The victims told me that the suspect’s voice and the way he talks on the phone were identical to mine.”

The chairman, who is expected to run for president in the 2017 election, said the scammer told his friends the money was going to be used to help people in need. Around five people informed him of such calls.

The 64-year-old politician said he reported the calls to the police two months ago but no suspect has been identified. Kim added that Rep. Shon In-chun of the ruling party was also targeted for voice phishing. She was asked to also wire money by a scammer impersonating Saenuri Rep. Lee Ju-young, a former maritime minister.

BY HYUN IL-HOON [kang.jinkyu@joongang.co.kr]

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